Smokin' Aces : DVD Review

Title: Smokin’ Aces 2
Format: DVD
Starring: Tom Berenger, Clayne Crawford
Directed By: P.J. Pesce
UK Release Date: 25/01/10
Certificate: 18

Considering that most of the characters of the original Smokin’ Aces film died it’s difficult to understand why a sequel has been produced. Last time out we had a cast of A-listers including Ben Affleck, Ryan Reynolds, Andy Garcia and Ray Liotta in the sequel we are treated to Tom Berenger and Clayne Crawford, yeh exactly I didn’t know who that was either. So it’s the guy from the Sniper films andů a cast of no-bodies. The original director Joe Carnahan has gone off to make The A-Team so declined to make a return to the big chair (or as the writer) so we have a new director and new writers as well. Well you can’t blame him for choosing the A Team over the Z-team can you?

Smokin' Aces (2007) - Movie PosterSo basically it’s a completely different film hoping to trade on the success of the first film. In my opinion the first film was nothing exceptional apart from having a likable cast and a pretty good twist at the end so how did this second film stand up to scrutiny? Well not terribly well. I should add that this is a prequel about a hit that happened before the original film.
The positives are that the direction is adequate and the acting on a whole is of a passable standard but the negatives are that the story is where the film falls down most heavily, and this is never a good thing in my opinion. To tell you when and where would give too much away but there are holes and other plotting difficulties. Maybe something went a little wrong in the editing suite but for me it doesn’t quite hold together.

I do however see this film finding a market on DVD for the home cinema experience. It’s not as good as the original but I’ve seen a lot worse, many times. Smokin’ Aces 2 isn’t exactly smokin’ hot but no doubt it’ll still smoulder warmly enough and for long enough to recoup its budget. A chance missed then maybe but there are a lot worse hands that the audience could have been dealt.

Author : Kevin Stanley