Unlucky Stars is exactly the movie you expect from filmmakers with backgrounds in stunt work.
Freshman filmmaker Dennis Ruel (who also co-wrote the screenplay) sets out to honour an earlier era of martial arts in a modern day society of movers and shakers. Ruel also plays one of the many characters in the congested Unlucky Stars, where everyone endures risky confrontations, misunderstandings, and co-worker drama all during a contrived plot that is only interested in providing punches and kicks.
There are sub-plots involving a Peruvian action star owing money to bad company, a newbie learning the ropes to a fuzzy private investigator gig, and a wannabe actor with a demanding reputation. There’s lots going on in Ruel’s clogged film, but any criticisms I have about the dutch-angle heavy presentation, the amateur performances and clichéd characterization, or the superfluous attempts to skewer exploitive pop culture will roll off his back. I assure you.
This is because the filmmaker (and the rest of his friendly production) are clearly interested in the brawls that hold Unlucky Stars together. As in similar action movies, the unevenly focused film can be forgiven because of how the practical fights have been choreographed, shot, and edited. And, since martial arts contribute to a large part of what sends Unlucky Stars in motion, the production has found a tiny loophole to slip through and earn appreciation from movie goers.
Unlucky Stars is what it is. Dennis Ruel’s flick is surefire viewing for those wanting to kick back for 99-minutes to watch incredible choreography from some of the best stuntmen working today. Make sure you stick around through the credits.
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Addison Wylie: @AddisonWylie