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Action icon Arnold Schwarzenegger returned to cinema, full-throttle, for an all-out showdown in ‘The Last Stand’, Kim Jee-woon’s high-speed, high-mayhem action-thriller.
The good guys have never had it this bad, but they’re ready to give it everything they’ve got in this hard-charging, car-chasing, fist-fighting wild ride that takes an amped-up spin on the classic good vs. bad battle.
Schwarzenegger stars as relentless Sheriff Ray Owens, who left behind the LAPD following a bungled narcotics operation that still wracks him with remorse. Now he’s leading the quiet life in the border town of Sommerton – but that quiet is about to be shattered, big-time. When Gabriel Cortez (Eduardo Noriega), the most lethal, not to mention wanted drug kingpin in America, makes a spectacular escape from an FBI prisoner convoy, he’s hell bent for the Sommerton border – in a specially-equipped Corvette ZR1 capable of blowing past 250 MPH.
U.S. Federal Agent John Bannister (Forest Whitaker) might be hot on his trail but Cortez has no fear of the Feds. Cortez only has to fear what he doesn’t see coming: Sheriff Ray Owens. Owens might be out-manned and out-gunned, but he won’t be out-smarted or out-lasted when Cortez threatens the only thing that matters to him now – his new home. Owens and his small but fiercely loyal force are all that stands between Cortez and his freedom.
He’s long been among the toughest, most iconic action heroes of cinema legend, but lately Arnold Schwarzenegger has been serving in another high-adrenaline role – as the Governor of California. Now, at last, he makes his much-anticipated comeback with his first leading action role in a decade in ‘The Last Stand’. Taking on the role of a small-town Sheriff with a hard-edged past, Schwarzenegger resumes his screen hero status with a character who is familiar in his fierceness, yet brings a new twist. This bold, badass veteran lawman has seen plenty of action — but he thinks he’s moved on to more peaceful pastures until bad guys show up in the very town where he’s come to escape them
“In this film, we see the Arnold we have missed, and the Arnold we have never seen before,” sums up the film’s director Jee-woon, whose Hollywood debut makes a surprise collision with Schwarzenegger’s return to the screen. One of the most lauded and watched of the Korean cinematic phenoms, Jee-Woon won acclaim with his stylish noir thriller ‘A Bittersweet Life’, his award-winning outlaw comedy ‘The Good, the Bad, the Weird’, his hardboiled horror movie ‘I Saw The Devil’ and his haunting ghost story ‘A Tale Of Two Sisters’. But he had never made an action film in America before – and would get his first chance to do so with the biggest Hollywood action star of them all.
Jee-woon was instantly drawn to ‘The Last Stand’s mix of breakneck speed, rollicking humor and colorful characters on both sides of the law, but he was compelled most of all by the chance to have Arnold lead an awe-inspiring defense of justice, even when he and his town have been counted out as nobodies.
Says Jee-woon of their unusual pairing: “Arnold has done everything in Hollywood and I am just starting out in Hollywood. We are so different, but when I met him, our thoughts on ‘The Last Stand’ and his character coincided. Sheriff Owens has left behind his violent past for a quiet, peaceful small town, but ironically, he must now put everything he has on the line in order to protect this new home. I think we both saw it as story about how a villain armed with high-tech machinery that even governments cannot stop is thwarted by small town people who are inspired by justice.”