I finally sat down to watch The Last Stand a few days ago, and I had a good time with it. I was born in '78, which is a lot like being a child of the 80s, and therefore it probably goes without saying that I'm a Schwarzenegger fan. I'm American after all, and Conan the Barbarian was practically my godfather. Having said that, Arnold's last few movies before his foray into politics were a bit lacking. I did enjoy his cameo in The Expendables and his extended cameo in The Expendables 2, but I was still unsure of just what to expect from The Last Stand. The previews led me to believe that it was going to be a bit too silly for me, but the film itself was a pleasant surprise.
Now, let's be real, it is a bit silly, and that shouldn't come as a shock given that Johnny Knoxville and Luis Guzman (a couple of personal favorites of mine) are in the supporting cast, but it's also surprisingly slick. The action was tight, the pace was relentless, and Arnold was game. Yes, the big guy still has it. Sure, he's getting old, and he's certainly slowing down, but he still has a presence that's hard to match. I think the biggest reason The Last Stand was a winner, however, was the direction c/o Kim Jee-Woon. What should have been a lesser vessel with some big names and big explosions in the mix become an exercise in style and a frantic race toward a nifty conclusion.
There were flaws, to be sure, but The Last Stand was a lot of fun and I'm going to recommend it to anyone who enjoys Arnold or a solid action film. It probably doesn't need to be stated here, but obviously this one is nowhere near as good as classic Schwarzenegger fare like Conan, Predator, or The Terminator, but it was head and shoulders above his most recent offerings. Additionally, I found it to be far more entertaining than most of the action films clogging up the cinema these days. Of course, I dig throwbacks, and I don't mind it when my action films are a bit tongue-in-cheek.