It would be nice to say that Jason Statham unleashes his wild side in Wild Card but actually this film finds him on relatively restrained form compared to stuff like The Transporter and Crank films.
From a William Goldman script based on his own novel, Wild Card begins with a woman being ditched outside a hospital bloodied and battered. It's up to Las Vegas security consultant Nick Wild (Statham) to find the men responsible. Roughed up beyond recognition by a fighter and his bodyguards, the woman is Holly and as soon as she is out of hospital, she contacts Nick as he is the only person in Vegas who is able to help her with his particular set of skills.
Offering up some graphic detail of her rape and humiliation, Wild Card should leave audiences chomping at the bit for Statham to unleash the pain on her tormentors. Unfortunately Dominik García-Lorido is completely unconvincing as a victim of such a horrendous ordeal and the script cares little for the trauma she has endured and much more about how Statham will respond. When he sarcastically utters 'this is the highlight of my career', you suspect no acting was required.
Boxer Danny DeMarco is the vicious thug hiding up in his swanky Vegas suite. It takes almost 40 minutes for Statham to confront him and show off what he can do and when the action comes, it’s swift and brutal. With a total of just three fight scenes in the entire film, it is likely that even those that are after a simple Statham beat-em-up will be left disappointed by this one.
When revenge is served and Wild goes on a gambling binge, like in the recent The Gambler, it’s incredibly difficult to sympathise with someone who keeps raising the stakes and risking throwing away obscene amounts of money. Nick has a soft spot for Blackjack and just can't walk away from the tables, even when he's half a million up. It’s a typical plot device that will leave many screaming with frustration at the screen.
Despite a cool soundtrack and last minute appearance from a coolly sinister Stanley Tucci, overall Wild Card could have dealt a considerably better hand.
Here is the trailer: