Wild Seven (2007)
Wild Seven (2007)

Genre: Crime Drama Running Time: 1 hr. 38 min.

Release Date: April 15th, 2007 MPAA Rating: R

Director: James M. Hausler Actors: Robert Forster, Robert Loggia, Richard Roundtree, Lucie Arnaz, Christopher Clark, Tyler Parkinson

 


 

“W

ild Seven” is an offensively incompetent caper film that aspires to be like “Pulp Fiction” or “Reservoir Dogs,” but instead sinks to a level of incomprehensibility, lunacy, and vulgarity, from which the only escape might be a fulfilling conclusion or entertaining characters. But it has neither. What it does have is an overabundance of just plain awful dialogue that screechingly drowns out the somewhat tolerable performances of the veteran group of actors, while any other redeeming qualities it might have had are lost to the horribly slow pacing and convoluted, meandering plot.

Recently released from prison, Wilson (Robert Forster) has revenge on his mind, with a Midwestern bank heist as the cover to trick his old backstabbing partner Mackey (Robert Loggia) into participating. Wilson also recruits prison bus driver Lee Marvin (Richard Roundtree) to complete the crew for his grand scheme. Meanwhile, a gang of twenty-something misfits, who excel in drinking, cursing, and spouting gay jokes, encounters additional bizarre characters, who engage in comparably obnoxious banter, lending to the coincidental formulation of a plan to rob the very same Arizona bank.

With its darkly comedic opening scene, pulsing with promising energy and an upbeat soundtrack, no one could have predicted the rapid downward spiral the film flushes itself into. From its heavy-handed, offensively immature dialogue (rife with unintelligent racial slurs), to what feels like hours of scheming that lead nowhere, there are only about two moderately entertaining segments in the entire production. Embarrassingly, writer/director James M. Hausler follows the path of too many amateur filmmakers: he wants to be the next Quentin Tarantino. But his efforts to emulate cinematographic and editing styles, or enhance character development through wordy conversations, rarely comes across as anything other than pathetic copycatting. To make matters worse, none of what is spoken is even remotely interesting, provocative, or otherwise entertaining. And if characters aren’t intended to rely on actions for potency, their words better speak loudly and relate something remarkable. But here, they simply do not.

Though Academy Award nominee Forster knows how to act, it’s not enough to save the film from its bloated ensemble cast or its hackneyed premise. Inexplicably, “Wild Seven” features eight main characters: three old-timers, five young delinquents, and zero interesting people. Wilson is an ex-con planning a heist for revenge; Lee is an ex-con who seemingly has no connection to Wilson, has just met him, and still agrees to participate in the robbery; and Mackey is the loose-cannon bigot everyone wants to kill. Of the five rebellious youths, only one has a recognizable personality and that’s only because it’s agonizingly annoying. What happens to these players becomes insignificant and irrelevant; not only will audiences not care, but the film also does an excellent job of failing to explain it all anyway. And with a laughably fake scorpion and one of the worst, most mind-bogglingly ambiguous conclusions ever committed to celluloid, “Wild Seven” is an absolute, undeniable, irredeemable disaster.

– Joel Massie

  • 1/10