SYNOPSIS: Firefighter Jeremy Colton (Josh Duhamel) witnesses a murder committed by a Long Beach gang leader (Vincent D’Onofrio) and goes into a protection program so he can testify against the man who's been a longtime target of police officer Mike Cella (Bruce Willis). When the life of Jeremy’s girlfriend (Rosario Dawson) is threatened, he enlists the help of a rival gang leader (Curtis Jackson) and takes the law into his own hands.


Transformers hunk Josh Duhamel plays Jeremy Coleman, a suave firefighter who witnesses a brutal murder taking place in a convenience store. Though placed under a witness protection program shortly after, Coleman and his girlfriend, Talia (conveniently also his assigned U.S. Marshal) are nearly killed by hired hitmen. Taking matters into his own hands, Coleman decides to take out David Hagan (Vincent D’Onofrio), the kingpin who is responsible for the murder and hit before the latter kills Jeremy’s loved ones.

Instead of Steven Seagal, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Cuba Gooding Jr in the lead, we have Josh Duhamel and also Rosario Dawson from Trance as the love interest and A-lister Bruce Willis as the grizzled local cop Mike Cella. Duhamel is almost forgettable in the role, Dawson needs a better agent, Willis (with no more than 15 minutes of screentime) is the lucky one to go back and forth from blockbusters to straight-to-DVD stuff and Vincent D’Onofrio is the only one who sizzles as the ruthless gangster. A long list of recognizable names including 50 Cent, Julian McMahon, Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, Vinnie Jones and Kevin Dunn are also thrown into this production by 50 Cent’s Cheetah Vision making it a surprising star-studded affair.

Fire With Fire is that kind of generic direct-to-video flick without much of an ambition and budget. The avenger story is predictable and you can easily guess Coleman’s next move even before he punched out Vinnie Jones’ tough as shit henchman character. Director David Barrett with a background in stunt is content with pulling off some violent shootouts and a climax that involves a burning building especially when your leading character is a fireman, you need to justify and showcase his skills liked throwing an axe onto his opponent and torching the baddies.

If you love a movie filled with random beating, killings and deaths then Fire With Fire more than suffices. On the other hand if the name Bruce Willis and his large bald head on the cover enticed you to it, then you have unfortunately made the wrong choice. 




The DVD comes with both serviceable audio and visual.



Review by Linus Tee