I can understand why Hidden Strike sat on the shelf for so long as it’s a generic buddy movie with an overuse of CG where very little feels real, but Cena and Chan are an appealing pair throwing one-liners at each other and there is enough action to be an entertaining watch on a rainy Saturday.
Plot: Two ex-special forces soldiers must escort a group of civilians along Baghdad’s “Highway of Death” to the safety of the Green Zone.
Review: Filmed several years ago, Hidden Strike starring Jackie Chan and John Cena has finally been released this weekend on Netflix.
This movie certainly has its flaws (which I’ll get to shortly) but as an old-school buddy romp it’s actually a lot of fun with John Cena and Jackie Chan making for an appealing duo hurling one-lines at each other. Cena has long since proven his comic timing and he has some of the best lines in the movie with Chan also showing his trademark humour.
When compared to the lines of Extraction 2 or John Wick then Hidden Strike is hardly classic action cinema with too much CGI and unnecessary wirework during some of the fight scenes. That’s my biggest problem as we get a scene where Chan and Cena throwdown but they keep defying gravity in a story that’s meant to be set in the real world.
It’s also incredibly generic and predictable with no real surprises to the story; the characters are forgettable and there isn’t much you’ll remember by the time we reach the end credits.
It’s the sheer charisma of our two leads that makes this watchable and the fact there are enough action scenes to keep it well paced.
I also enjoyed Pilou Asbæk as the villain Owen Paddock who is hardly iconic but nasty enough that we hate him.
Overall, Hidden Strike is a fun if bland buddy romp only really elevated by our two leads and some entertaining set-pieces. It’s generic stuff and I understand why it was buried for so long but it’s a harmless enough time waster.