When international diplomacy comes up short, extreme measures must be taken. In the newest installment of The Art of War, Agent Neil Shaw, played by Naughty By Nature's sensation, Treach, is on a covert mission to stop North Korean terrorists from obtaining a nuclear bomb. But when the deal turns deadly, Shaw is drawn into the crossfire to save a beautiful facilitator (Playboy model Sung Hi Lee)... and ends up framed for murder. Now a wanted man with only his newbie partner and the mysterious facilitator by his side, Shaw must rely on his kick-ass martial arts skills and bad-ass warrior code to fight through Korea's mean streets and find the terrorists before they detonate the bomb at a United Nations peace summit. This is war, and there is an art to it.
For knowing when to do battle or when to walk away is to know the true art of war - Neil Shaw
Art of War continues in this third instalment of the Wesley
Snipes' front franchise. Wait a minute, is that Snipes on
the DVD cover? Apparently not. The role of Agent Neil Shaw
is now taken over by rapper artist Treach from Naughty by
Nature. In The Art of War III: Retribution, Shaw is drawn
into a covert mission to stop North Korean terrorists from
obtaining a nuclear bomb and detonating it at the U.N. summit.
is obviously not a high-end, no-brainer action flick given
the amateur production values that generates more laughs and
entertainment fodder than the movie itself. The prologue is
a laughable attempt at portraying Islamic terrorists, the
firearms sound like fire-crackers and why is that guy thumping
so hard on the dummy-looking laptop thingy? Throughout the
duration, we never lay our eyes on the nuke too.
intercut with archival city shots of Korea to bring out the
supposedly set in Korea storyline littered with lots of makeshift
Korean signage courtesy of the set designers only expand the
While the original Art of War was no action
classic at least it passes off as mindless entertainment as
noted in my review of The Art of War II: Betrayal. The sequel
starring Snipes was a straight to DVD release as per this
one. Snipes takes himself seriously despite the less than
appealing plotline and well, possessed the charisma to carry
a movie. He is still Blade for heaven’s sake, the man
can still pull a punch or two. Apparently, Retribution goes
a few notches lower as compared to Betrayal that even Snipes,
the go-to-man for home videos shunned it.
tries hard to reprise the role which Snipes originates. You
know Snipes has a certain air of mannerism that's difficult
to replicate. The cheesy dialogues and clumsy action choreography
don't help in creating a believable character let alone a
hero who saves the nation. Playboy model Lee Sung-Hi (though
she didn’t strip off here if you are keen to know) pairs
off with Treach as a mysterious woman caught in the war and
the one who looks like he is having a ball of time is wannabe
agent J played by Warren Derosa.
want to see how bad a home video release goes? The Art of
War III: Retribution is the perfect example. And no, inserting
nuggets of wisdom doesn't elevate the status of the movie
nor conceal the bulk of crappiness.
SPECIAL FEATURES :
Code 3 DVD contains 14 trailers including The Fifth Commandment, Blood: The Last Vampire, District 9, Moon, The Art of War II, The Informers and many others.
can clearly hear the laugh-inducing popping sounds from the
firearms courtesy of the Dolby Digital and visually speaking,
it looks awfully close to a TV drama.
by Linus Tee
Posted on 17 August 2009