A dunder-headed actioner of little wit and less invention, Welcome To The Jungle stars sometime wrestler Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson as a polite bounty hunter tracking down a treasure hunter (Seann William Scott) in the Brazilian jungle. They bicker and bond while a ruthless robber-baron (Christopher Walken) chases them to discover the location of a priceless artefact. Perhaps, for example, a decent script. Fans of The Rock will no doubt adore the action, while Walken is amusing as ever, but the rest is relentlessly dull.
Where have all the good dumb movies gone? The films that were far-fetched and feckless but somehow fun? The Rock has been touted as a successor to Arnold Schwarzenegger, but this lacks the unapologetic glee of Arnie's 80s adventures such as The Running Man.
For a start, The Rock talks too much. Which wouldn't be so bad if the dialogue wasn't so bland. His bone-crunching, tendon-tearing hand-to-hand efforts, meanwhile, are tinged with apology: as if, really, he'd rather be attending crisis solutions seminars or anger management counselling.
"BANTER BETWEEN THE LEADS IS LEADEN"
Scott delivers a variation on his American Pie persona of whiny cretin with a good heart deep down. A comic actor with nice timing, he's let down either by the material or his inability to improvise. The banter between the leads is leaden, while a moment with amorous monkeys is the desperate climax of the physical comedy.
Only Walken makes this almost worth watching, injecting scenes with his trademark charismatic scorn and scaly style. And the image of a cheerfully corrupt western capitalist at least rings true. One to watch very drunk or very young. Or better still, not at all.