The story actually doesn't sound to bad, but if you saw the original you know there is more to it then that. Without spoiling to much, I will say the ending left me disappointed. The way they handle it doesn't seem in character with the rest of the film. And it was also the biggest change between the two films. Keeping the original would have made for a much stronger experience overall. That being said, everything else with the story worked pretty well. It had a good set up to get the action started, and it did a good job of pissing you off and getting you invested at key moments. They give each of the two leads a reason to be there, and a reason to try there best to get to Tremaine.
This was a movie about Parkour before parkour really took off. Lino bounces around and flips all over things while running up walls and diving through any window he sees. Even Walker tries to get in on the action from time to time. That was actually one thing I didn't understand. We see Walker doing back flips off of people, and flipping around on dumpsters. But when the time comes for him to flip off of a pipe and into a 3 foot opening, he can't do it. It seemed odd and out of place that he suddenly wasn't a acrobatic god anymore. For the most part though the action was fairly solid, and the parkour scenes were usually entertaining. The movie has a lot of shooting, and fist fights. The shooting was where it seemed to lack the most. Paul Walker is given a scoped rifle and hits a very small target the size of a briefcase. He then misses a person sitting in a chair from the same range 4 or 5 times in a row within the same minute. This is kind of a metaphor for the way guns were handled in the movie. Bad guys have guns, don't worry, they won't hit anything unless it is important so you didn't really react or care. The mostly seemed to be used as loud noises to try and get some sort of excitement out of you. If they put the guns down though, you knew something cool was about to happen.
Acting is not something you worry about in a film like this. That doesn't mean it was bad, but it was not the main focus. The actors did alright with what they were given, I would say The Rza was probably the stand out here. And if you are familiar with his acting, you know that is not a positive to the film. I like Paul Walker, but he has never been known for his amazing acting abilities. He is good, but not great. And honestly that sums up pretty much everybody else here.
This seems like such a odd film to be remade, and so long after the original. Did we really need it? They didn't even really try to do anything new with it, and I don't recall it being advertised all that much. I had not even heard about it until yesterday. It does a good job of showing what the original film was all about, and tries to go for the same message that the first one did. But due to how they altered the end when we are supposed to be putting everything together, the movie just falls flat. We have decent action, but not much else. It was a enjoyable movie, but the ending seemed oddly out of place. It felt like they just took the easy way out, instead of trying to figure out a complex but appropriate answer to the issue. For a popcorn flick, it was decent enough. I would rent it, but I would never buy it. If you just want to see what Walker was working on before he did, check this out. If you just want a action flick, there are better options. Still it did keep me entertained for the most part.