Despite the TV-MA rating on Netflix, The Last Mercenary, recently released, is actually an action comedy for audiences mostly of all ages.
Jean-Claude Van Damme plays Richard Brumere, otherwise known as The Mist, who’s been in hiding since the mid-1990s, working mostly as a soldier of fortune, after leave the French secret service following the death of his ex-girlfriend, Farah (Quidad Elma).
They had a son, Archibald AI Mahmoud (Samir Decezza) who suddenly finds himself falsely accused of arms and drug trafficking, due to mistakes by French bureaucrats and Mafia operations. So, Richard returns to France to protect his son and clear his name.
The movie does have a lot of humor and meta-references to it. One of the funniest is when Richard appears in a flashback battle zone looking like Rambo. Another scene is when he spots a Bloodsport movie poster and smiles. He even does the famous dance from Kickboxer.
There’s also a lot of high-kicking and martial arts fighting along with the action sequences, one of them involving a bureaucrat riding on a scooter through Paris.
Now 60, the “Muscles from Brussels” has had his career and personal ups and downs over his career. I remember first seeing him as the silent but dangerous goon in No Retreat, No Surrender. He’s mostly known for his signature leg split, which he does in this movie.
While this movie has received mixed reviews from other critics, it does run a little bitt longer than it should. This is clearly a 90ish minute movie that has 10-15 minutes that could’ve very easily been trimmed.
Still the lighter feel of the movie and the comedy is a nice change of pace for Van Damme. I must tell people that it’s mostly in French with subtitles which might distract some viewers. But if you’re looking for just a silly movie to watch for a couple of hours, this is it.