It can often be quite disheartening to see individuals in a film who you normally enjoy bring themselves down by starring in to, for lack of a better word, trash. Sure, there are mortgages and bills to pay, but it can still hurt to see talented individuals bring themselves to such a level. It is a sight that we have unfortunately started to become accustomed to when it comes to Antonio Banderas. Like many of his The Expendables 3 cast mate, Banderas has gone the route of the straight-to-DVD cheap thrill with the likes of Die Hard-wannabe Security and this latest offering Gun Shy, from the director of Con Air, Simon West. There’s a certain degree of action movie pedigree here, but you can hardly tell as Gun Shy proves to be a witless experience that I am sure all involved are going to want to quickly forget.
Banderas plays rock star Turk Henry who heads back to his native country of Chile for a vacation with his supermodel wife (Olga Kurylenko). When she is kidnapped and held for ransom, the pampered rock star suddenly finds himself thrust into an action-packed adventure as he attempts to save his wife from the kidnappers clutches.
In all fairness to Banderas, he is by no means the problem with this film. The concept is certainly fertile for a mad cap adventure about a rock star who is too coddled to even order his own food, let alone take on a group of kidnappers. With flamboyant outfits, big hair and a decent level of exuberance, Banderas at least attempts to add energy to the film, but he is under-served by a script which is only after the quickest and cheapest laugh.
Gun Shy also has a supporting cast which looks promising on the surface, but whom are once again clearly not bothered or poorly served by a script which isn’t interested in providing them with material that is all that funny. Kurylenko does her best to match the energy of Banderas, and they are not an unappealing coupling, but she is largely reduced to being the damsel in distress with shallow attempts at agency. David Mitchell turns up as Banderas manager but is quickly forgotten about, leaving the left comedic-ally gifted likes of Aisling Loftus and Mark Valley to try and pump some comedic energy in the flat subplots and side characters.
Everyone involved has done better than this. Simon West may only have one genuinely great action movie to his name, but you’d be forgiven for not recognising this as the same work as the man who orchestrated the brilliant lunacy of Con Air. Gun Shy is a desperate, embarrassingly unfunny attempt at a slapstick caper, with the script firing blanks at each and every turn. Don’t worry Antonio, I am sure Pedro Almodovar will have something worthwhile for you to do again soon.
Gun Shy is available to rent and buy on digital platforms now.