Arnold is back in Sabotage, as the head of an elite DEA task force taking out drug cartels in the city of Atlanta. After a mission in a cartel safe house leads to ten million dollars in cash missing, they are taken down one by one by the cartel. Written by Skip Woods (A Good Day to Die Hard, Swordfish) and Directed by David Ayer (End of Watch), the visual style of Sabotage is raw and gritty and rarely glorifies its heroes like a standard Hollywood movie.
Boasting a wide range of hunky actors like Sam Worthington (Avatar), Terrence Howard (Iron Man), Joe Manganiello (True Blood) along with two annoying female leads, the performances are by far the weakest link in the film. Their roles of elite DEA operatives, family and honor loses credibility when you see them indulging in alcohol, debauchery and hillbilly behavior. They play their characters with little dedication that even when they begin to fall apart you are least bothered with their troubles. Arnold plays a more grandfather figure to these delinquent characters with ease and doesn’t overdo the role as he usually does. Also his fans won’t be disappointed as they will witness him using various weapons like a badass from his earlier films.
But what Sabotage severely lacks in performances it makes up for in its action. David Ayer directs the shoot em up scenes similar to how he did in End of Watch and it looks fantastic. The gunshots, bullet wounds and explosions feel so real; it will drop your jaw to the floor. Unlike other gore movies like Saw and Hostel where the grotesque nature is watchable, throughout the movie the mutilated corpses of various victims will make your head turn. Using practical effects instead of CGI was definitely the right call by Ayer making the action look brilliant in a movie that otherwise doesn’t have much going for it.