Van Damme proves again his prowess with both physical action and self effacing humor in this French spoof.
Fans of the action hero will be satisfied with The Last Mercenary's nearly two hours of martial arts, weaponry, and car chases. But the film offers more by way of its self aware spoofing of the genre.
There are fun references to other movies and goofy asides, like The Mist's frequent use of wise but also somewhat meaningless proverbs from world cultures. Van Damme's character is also a master of ridiculous disguise. Paris is on display in the background of this film, which has at least one line of patriotism in the script.
The ragtag team of mercenaries, who stop occasionally to strike action-hero poses, all grow individually as a result of their group effort, and the father-son bonding between Van Damme's "The Mist" and his grown but coddled and estranged son Archie offers a sweet storyline.
Supporting cast, particularly Alban Ivanov as the bumbling do-gooder agent and Assa Sylla as the tough and clever local survivor, create charming secondary characters. It's also refreshing to see two older women -- played by veterans Miou Miou and Valerie Kaprisky -- in key roles.
Read the full review at Common Sense Media.