Ben's Review of Lionheart
Of all of the Van Damme films that are in existence, "Lionheart" seems to display the biggest attempt at having the most heart. At the same time, the film also displays one of the biggest failures of this attempt. Embedded in a story that doesn't seem to have much tangibility, Van Damme's physical performance simply wasn't enough to stop this movie from being as bad as it was. The poor performances from the entire cast don't put the film's story on the right path to say the least, and the viewer will find themselves anticipating the end of the movie right from the beginning.
Once again, Van Damme stars in a film where he plays a twin brother of himself. I don't know how many times this has been done in his career, but its definitely odd. In this particular version, Van Damme's brother is beaten up by a street gang, and he comes to find out who did it. He discovers an underground organization of street fighters. He attempts to work his way up to the top to support the family that his brother left behind or something. I'm not sure if that's exactly the plot, but you get the general idea. The overall concept of the film certainly has the potential to be good. The flaws come in every other department.
The acting in "Lionheart" is horrible, and this is no surprise. This is mainly due to the horrible script that gives the audience nothing real to grab on to. Van Damme gives a lazy acting job, along with the rest of the cast, who doesn't seem to have much talent to begin with. It's pretty belly-aching to watch in this regard.
The one possible thing that the film had going for it were the brawl sequences. At this point, Van Damme was at the pinnacle of his physical capabilities. Though it was entertaining to watch him spar with his opponents, these scenes were let down because of the ridiculous content that surrounded these fights. There was no tension to be felt, and no conflict to be found. This was truly disappointing.
"Lionheart" is certainly one of Van Damme's worse films from the early 90's. The terrible performances and ridiculous script only mark the tip of what to criticize in this production. Without even focusing on any technical detail of production, or any specific department, the film itself is just boring. It's dry, unfocused, and all over the place. Not good.