"Is that real leather?" "For the last time, no!"
At Al's suprisingly luxurious hideaway, Grey contemplates what has happened by using as many lame turns of phrase as he can come up with, such as "Just enough time to breathe... or asphyxiate." As an apology for being a stupid bitch earlier, Illiana brings him a drink, then promptly takes it away. That just happens to be Grey's turn-on, so they help themselves to a heaping plate of sex. Now, you might think it's a little callous of Al's wife and his closest confidant to have sex less than twenty-four hours after he was killed, but to be fair, Grey does feel kind of bad about it. He even goes outside and gives the air the most savage beating it's ever seen. He thrashes around for so long that by the time he goes back inside, Illiana has been kidnapped by Mongoose. Mongoose and Grey take a shot at one another and both miss, much to their surprise. Grey is even more surprised when Mongoose shoots at him again. He hadn't even thought about trying that. Luckily, he's able to roll away a little so that he only takes the shotgun blast to the shoulder, which has no longterm effect on him or his clothing whatsoever. Mongoose drives away with Illiana, but Grey snaps back to his senses shortly thereafter. And that brings us right up to where we were when the movie began. Yay! Of course, now everything is going to go straight to hell.
Things not going exactly as planned, there, Woody?
A graphic informs us that this is "Day 2." Now, if Al was murdered on Day 1, and there was a complete morning, afternoon, and night after that, I would have thought that that was Day 2. Time just flows a little differently when you're an eternal gangsta. And speaking of our gangsta friends, they are up to some interesting new tricks. Grey is arming himself and steeling his resolve for a full out assault on Woods and his army of expert guards. Mongoose, meanwhile, is trying to feed Illiana a donut. So there you go. When the donut initiative fails, Mongoose brings Illiana back to Woods and warns him not to double cross him. Woods agrees to Mongoose's terms, then promptly double crosses him, having his guards train their guns on him. Unfortunately for Woods and his plan, he's a giant pussy and Illiana quickly steals his gun and uses it to hold him hostage. Then, just to add a little spice to the situation, Alex Ye's gang attacks. Grey arrives at the compound, and gets psyched for the battle ahead by spouting "come and get some," in his best Bruce Campbell. Remember, it's not plagiarism - they stuck the word "and" in there!
"You have nice eyes."
Illiana and Woods disappear, and everybody has a good ol' time killing everybody else until it comes down to just Grey and Mongoose. After fighting him for roughly three seconds, Grey decides he knows exactly what's going on. He then proceeds to recount a long and sad story of how he was an Arab in a previous life, and a fat fat fatty fat fat of a sheik kidnapped his wife. When he went to rescue her, the sheik was able to defend against all of his attacks without even getting out of his seat, and Arab-Grey accidentally killed the woman he was trying to save. He then took his own life, and in doing so, his soul split in two, thus creating Mongoose. And so they were doomed to battle one another in life after life until they finally reconciled. That, uh, that makes sense... I guess. Personally, I would have canned all that divided soul crap and just said that Mongoose was a reincarnation of the fatass sheik After all, the sheik was a nasty fighter. He caught a thrown knife in midair. That's pretty cool. It would have been a lot easier to swallow, that way. but okay. This works too, I suppose.
Amazingly enough, Mongoose is not convinced, so their fight continues. They each have a gun in each hand and proceed to have the strangest firefight I've ever seen. They keep using the same move over and over again - shoot, spin, shoot, spin, shoot, spin. If either one of them would just stand still, they would have no problem blowing the other one away. They both run out of ammo and resort to martial arts. Again, they are too evenly matched. Their fight comes to a sudden stop when Woods appears. Both killers grab their guns again, and miraculously they now have ammo. Even more miraculously, they both waste every single shot on Woods. Neither one has the presence of mind to save one bullet for killing the other guy.
I know it's not my fault, but even so, I'm really, really sorry.
Grey and Mongoose stare each other down. Grey tries to convince Mongoose that he's right about all that soul crap. In a vomitous orgy of bad dubbing, there is actually a point where Mongoose's mouth is moving and Grey's voice keeps going. In fact, Mongoose doesn't even have any more dialogue. Now, you can probably guess that they're not about to kill each other and just be reincarnated again. No, there has to be a resolution, which means that Grey and Mongoose will have to throw their differences aside and unite. But what could bring these two together? If killing Woods didn't do it, what else is there? Why, D.A. Jackson would have to introduce an entirely new plot element to do that, and with ten minutes left to the movie, that would just be preposterous! Or would it? Yes, it most definitely would, but he does it anyway.
Enter Overkill. That's right, Overkill. He's big, he's fat, he's black, and he's got enough firepower to miss Grey and Mongoose all fucking day. He says something or other about avenging his brother. I make the assumption he's talking about Al, although for all I know it could be the guy that Woods capped earlier. Hell, it could be some nameless corpse on the ground. Who the hell knows? Since he's the expert on all of this, Grey decides that Overkill is the reincarnation of the fat sheik, whose greed and lust led to the death of Grey/Mongoose's wife. You know what? Fine. Why not. So Grey and Mongoose join forces to take this guy down. At one point Overkill gets ahold of Mongoose, but Grey saves him, which is all very touching. Of course, he then jams a grenade up Overkill's ass and shoves him into Mongoose, which I believe blows them both up, so there you go.
Well, at least he's happy.
His two nemeses defeated, Grey makes his way through the room full of dead bodies, several of which are breathing. Illiana emerges from her hiding place and begs Grey to stay with her and build a future together. That's just like a woman. She doesn't even wait to get out of the sea of bullet-ridden corpses before she starts nagging him about settling down. Grey tells her he can't do it, and they embrace one last time. During that embrace, Illiana shoots him in the stomach. She's a dirty whore, that one. As Grey lays dying, some completely random and as far as I know unaffiliated guys burst into the room and shoot Illiana with automatic weapons for far longer than would ever be necessary. Sans any fake blood or anything of that nature, Illiana gets to just stand there trying to act like she's being shot for a few minutes. Seeing the woman that he came to love and who eventually killed him spasming like an idiot brings a smile to Grey's face in his final moments, and that is the notion that D.A. Jackson leaves us with as his movie draws to a close.
"Eternal Gangstas" did so much right that it pains me to see it do so much wrong. Some of the fights were the best I've seen in any movie, low budget or otherwise. Jackson put together some great fight choreography and made excellent use of fast motion. If I was going to make an action movie, I'd happily hire him to put the fights together. However, I would also get a court order preventing him from laying his damn hands on any other aspect of the movie. He used visual effects during non-action sequences constantly, and they never helped. Not once. And I don't know what in the name of God he did on the sound board. It was like he just kept pressing random buttons. Reverb effects come and go throughout the movie. It's not even like he carefully picked and chose the lines that needed some special emphasis. There are throwaway lines that echo like a canyon. The actual dialogue isn't godawful. Mosquito bites aren't godawful either, when you get down to it, but that doesn't mean they should be encouraged. But the plot - dear lord, the plot. Jackson gets himself in so deep by the end that you can see the flimsy addition of a new character coming from a mile away, and it still doesn't make it any more bearable. If he had just made this either the story of a great fighter who is framed for a his boss' murder or the story of two warriors battling it out across the centuries, it would have been fine. But no, he had to do both at once, and the result is a barely intelligible load of wannabe catchphrases and shitty dubbing.
|Special Effects:||- 9|
|Music / Sound:||- 7|
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