Java Heat (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes

Java Heat (2013)

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At a time when relations between the West and Islam are dangerously tense, Java Heat opens amidst the aftermath of a terrorist attack in Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim nation. Java Heat centers on Jake (Lutz), a reckless American tough guy who becomes embroiled in the turmoil ensuing the attacks, which killed the country's much beloved Sultana. Jake is bent on vengeance but quickly finds the world a more complicated place than he can solve with violence alone. Lost among labyrinths of religious, political and cultural havoc, Jake must ally with cerebral Muslim detective Hashim (rising Indonesian star Ario Bayu), who handles Jake more like a suspect than a partner. The uneasy friendship leads to a treacherous man-hunt for the attack's real instigator, a new breed of klepto-terrorist (Rourke), who is even more twisted and terrifying than the Jihadist terrorists he hides behind. (c) IFC Films

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Cast

Ario Bayu
as Hashim
Frans Tumbuan
as General Sriyono
T. Rifnu Wikana
as Captain Agus
Rudi Wowor
as Sultan
Nick McKinless
as Jim Bretton
Latip Abdul Latip
as Motorcyclist
Buseri Lukman
as Motorcyclist
Eva Wulansari
as Motor Bike Shooter
Frendy Kusuma
as Surveillance Van Driver
Denisa Marthatina
as Flight Attendant
Gobby Njoo
as Wizened Monk
Disyon Gahezi
as Japanese Bodyguard
Wulan Soediro
as Massage Clerk
Susumu Kawase
as Mr. Yoshiro
Joko Utomo
as Cop Partner
Peter Collias
as Euro Man
Awang Hartawan
as Chinese Man
Ie Djoen Sim
as Chinese Mother
Deanisa Afifanda
as Young Woman
Andipa Perdana Putra
as Young Alley Boy
Airell Maulana
as Young Boy
Nanda Giri
as Female Vendor 1
Ni Komang Dewi
as Female Vendor 2
G. Inez Veranosiliyana
as Sexy Masseusse
Brent Duke
as Marine MP
Virdy Kirniawan
as Ambulance Driver
Michael Johan
as Chinese Bouncer
Kaka Krisna
as Royal Guard
Stani Arifasti
as Pretty Masseuse
Sarita
as Lady Boy
Hussain Fuad
as Young Terrorist
M. Ari H
as Bouncer
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Critic Reviews for Java Heat

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (8)

The film's anthropological interest in Indonesia is the smartest thing in an otherwise familiar scramble of kidnapped babes, expensive jewelry and millions of bullets.

Full Review… | May 17, 2013
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

The potential fun is all thoroughly undone, however, by an eye-roller of a script and a leaden lead performance from Twilight heartthrob Kellan Lutz.

Full Review… | May 15, 2013
Variety
Top Critic

Lutz ... doesn't have half the charisma required to hold together this jumble of cheesy shootouts and chases, but at least Rourke provides some unintended laughs with his comical attempts to be evil.

Full Review… | May 10, 2013
New York Post
Top Critic

A better title for "Java Heat" might have been "Java Noise," since that is mostly what this uninvolving action film produces.

Full Review… | May 9, 2013
New York Times
Top Critic

This otherwise generic '80s-style actioner benefits from the presence of the ever-colorful Mickey Rourke as an exotic villian.

Full Review… | May 9, 2013
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

Remember all those years when Mickey Rourke was languishing in cheap, straight-to-DVD work that paid his rent and wasted his talents? Apparently, he actually enjoyed making those movies.

Full Review… | May 9, 2013
New York Daily News
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Java Heat

Turn them into hooker royalty. A Muslim and American detective collaborates to try and bring down a terrorist drug lord in the Indonesia city of Java. The American quickly becomes to scapegoat for many of the terrorist's acts complicating their efforts and the Indonesian detective's ability to trust him. Can the two work together and track down the terrorist kingpin? "You know you can trust me." "Yeah, that's why you're sitting in the back." Conor Allyn, director of Hearts of Freedom, Zoe Gone, Pocket Listing, and Hyper 5, delivers Java Heat. The storyline for this picture is very mediocre and cliché with an excellent villain. The script is mediocre and the action is fairly good. The cast delivers below average performances and really only has Mickey Rourke worth noting. "Like a bull in a China shop." "Why would a bull buy dishes?" This was recently added to Netflix so I added it to the queue as a fan of Mickey Rourke. This was a very blah action film with little going for it. Rourke had some good moments, but not enough to make this worth watching. I'd skip this, even if you're a fan of action pictures. "You get in bed with a snake don't be surprised when you are bitten" Grade: F

Kevin Robbins
Kevin Robbins
½

A decent action film from Indonesia. The story is not in any way original and contains no surprises but it is a workmanlike piece of film-making. Aside from Mickey Rourke and Kellan Lutz the cast is almost entirely unfamiliar, but the acting is of as good a quality as one is likely to see in an action movie. Ario Bayu gives a particularly fine performance as the competent cop in charge of investigating a suicide bombing. The production values are good and the movie does a fine job of using its setting and atmosphere.

David Duncan
David Duncan
½

"Pick up your feet, got to move to the trick of the beat; there is no elite, just take your place in the java heat!" I don't know why, but this film's title kind of makes me think of Sniff 'n' the Tears' "Driver's Seat", probably because somebody's got to remember that song. Well, at least that one-hit wonder pop-rock tune from the late '70s is getting more promotion than this film, though, to be fair, this is so much like a forgettable '80s action fluff piece that people must have forgotten about it over the course of about 30 years, even though it just came out. Okay, perhaps this film isn't that '80s, but it doesn't really perk you up quite as much as you expect out of a film about coffee doing battle... or whatever this is about. Like I said, they haven't been promoting this much, but I can tell you that Mickey Rourke looks like he could use some caffeine, or at least a better agent. Rourke and Kellan Lutz both need new agents, because Lutz is finally making his big break into the independent circuit after all of that "Twilight" nonsense, but he has to settle for some Indonesian action thriller that hardly anyone is seeing or liking. Well, I guess "barley" is more fitting than "hardly", because there's at least one jerk out there who likes this, even if I-I mean, he has some problems with it. The film offers some thin, unsubtle characterization, and it could have potentially compensated for that if it at least spent more time drawing out the character types, yet as things stand, there's hardly any background to immediate development, while gradual exposition proves to be lacking, or least feels that way, due to some serious unevenness to character usage. Even the jumps between Kellan Lutz's and Ario Bayu's sides of the same central narrative that they lead jars, and yet, whatever the plot layer in focus may be, there's at least consistency in familiarity, as there are few, if any refreshing elements to the character types, as well as a "complex" thriller plot that is not intricate enough to keep you from predicting. This effort entertains just fine along the way, but you know this path, and whether you've seen it through certain '80s thrillers that seem to have some influence on storytelling or through a fall-flat modern thriller that takes itself too seriously, this storytelling is hardly anything new, going so far as to take subtlety issues that are practically trademark in films of this type. The lighter moments - some of which go so far as to incorporate all-out comic relief - are relatively rare, but are about as rarely organic as shifts in tone, breaking tension with some cheesiness, backed by a lack of subtlety that ironically also backs tension. The film is consistent in conventionalism and a lack of subtlety, yet it continues to be uneven in focus and tone, and that's challenging enough to your investment enough without all of pacing inconsistencies, which at least seem present when director Conor Allyn runs out of steam. This film is rarely too dull, but there are times in which dry meditations and other questionable directorial elements bring storytelling to a whiplash-inducing half that blands things up and distances, though not without retaining enough of your attention to direct it toward other flaws, which are considerable in quantity and severity. The final product comes pretty close to mediocrity, a point that many are saying it actually descends from, but for me, decency is ultimately achieved, by a hair, to be sure, but enough so for me to be engaged, at least on a visual level. Shane Daly's cinematography is not quite unique enough to be all that striking, but it's still stronger than certain people are giving it credit for, being bleak enough to compliment the grit of this environment, while keeping up enough softness to carry a distinct handsomeness. Fine cinematography is pretty much the most recurring stylistic strength in this film, yet style is perhaps brought to light the most during brawls, shootouts and other assorted action goodness, backed by formulaic, but impressively harsh staging, whose intensity plays a big part in backing this thriller with a genuine sense of consequence. If tension is ever present, it's certainly quite prominent during the action sequences, as surely as other heights in engagement value go anchored by sharp style, yet, I must that is might be substance that ultimately saves the final product from mediocrity. Sure, this story is generic and thin, and the telling of it is not too much more biting, yet there is still a fair bit of bite, at least in concept, no matter how predictable this dramatic action thriller is, which isn't to say that the interpretation of this narrative isn't still commendable in plenty of areas, including the portrayal of thinly drawn characters. The particularly underused Mickey Rourke steals the show with both an excellent accent and an intimidating presence as an antagonist, but the leads keep things going, to a certain extent at least, with Kellan Lutz having bland moments, yet ultimately a decent amount of charisma, while Ario Bayu proves to be even more effective in his portrayal of a charmingly short-fused, but sharp and humanly flawed man of the law who gets in over his head. Really, every performance is pretty decent, including a key offscreen one by Conor Allyn, whose directorial efforts are more like Lutz's onscreen performance, in that they have their share of bland spells, yet are generally quite decent, playing with anything from an often atmospheric score by Justin Caine Burnett, to the aforementioned striking style and action in order to grip, or at least entertain. Yeah, there are bland spells, but at the end of the day, this is pretty entertaining stuff, and while I kind of wish that the final product was more than that, - say, a more refreshing and coherent thriller - that's enough to get it by as decent, even if it doesn't get things by as especially memorable. When the heat has cooled down, the final product is chilled down too much by underdevelopment, genericisms, inconsistencies in focus and tone, and many an atmospheric cold spell to drift too far away from mediocrity, which it still manages to evade to a fair extent, as there is enough handsomeness to the cinematography, intensity to the action, intrigue to the thin narrative, charisma to the lead performances by Kellan Lutz and Ario Bayu, and effectiveness to Conor Allyn's direction to make "Java Heat" an adequately entertaining and often genuinely intense thriller, no matter how much thrills go limited. 2.5/5 - Fair

Cameron Johnson
Cameron Johnson

Super Reviewer

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