Not what you would expect but entertaining.
The main letdown of this movie is that you would expect Gamer to be a straight forward action pic. Instead it indulges in jump cuts and glitches (more jump cuts) which distract from what would be very interesting action cinema.
Gamer (Rated R for sexual situations, nudity, language, and graphic bloody violence) — 2 entertaining stars out of 4. Starring Gerard Butler, Michael C. Hall, Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges, Terry Crews, and more. The movie is about how a man named Kable (Butler) is 4 televised deathmatch games away from being freed from death row prison. If you have been around a while and saw Schwarzenegger in Running Man you kind of know what to expect in this movie. The main twist is that part of the convicts’ brains are replaced with “nanites” which makes them gain an ip address through which gamers can control them. Too bad these convicts didn’t have the Doctor around to help them from joining the collective.
What makes this movie interesting is the social commentary showing how people hide behind avatars online to get rid of their flaws whether through a ‘sim’ character or a video game shooter hero. This movie pokes fun at what people get away with online in a virtual world and makes us look at what are really our values. Although the action is abbreviated, it is still pretty good, and if you spend any amount of time doing any social networking online you will at least have something entertaining to watch. Butler, as usual, is great in the film.
Other prisoners-fight-for-their-freedom-on-tv-films: Running Man (1987), The Condemned (2007), Sliders episodes “Dead Man Sliding,” and “Rules of the Game,”
Videogames that seem to capture part of the spirit of this movie: Smash TV, Halo 3, Gears of War, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.