I personally ejoyed this movie better then the The Marine (Unrated Edition) with Cena because of the plot and the acting. It only makes sense that "Stone Cold" Steve Austin would get his own action vehicle. If WWE films was going to put premier wrestlers John Cena in an action movie and "Kane" in a horror flick, then why not put one of your most famous wrestlers in a no holds barred brawl of a movie Steve Austin does bring new meaning to term "gravity." With a neck as thick as his skull and two eyes that glower menacingly from beneath a shaved head, he not only looks like a stripped tree trunk, in the new action adventure The Condemned, he seems like he might topple from the screen onto the front row at any second.
The Condemned follows the story of a millionaire megalomaniac who decides to take death row inmates from various prisons around the world and pit them against each other in a battle to the death. He winner gets his freedom. The world gets to watch the action over the internet. Unbeknownst to the producers, one of the contestants is wrongfully imprisoned special-forces soldier Joe Conrad (played by Austin).
Every once in a while we all need a film that doesn't promise high art, or any kind of art for that matter. It is always nice to turn off your brain and watch guys beat the crap out of each other on film. No pretense at all, just pure violent, fun. At first glance that is exactly what you get in this film. Sadly though, the film unravels on itself. During the making of the film, it seems that the cameraman had an epileptic fit every time he had to shoot any kind of fight scene. You would expect a film about men killing each other would be more violent. Several of the completely painful subplots defiled such a simple premise as "ten men enter, one man leaves". The director seems to be under the impression that watching Vinnie Jones beat up someone else is only worth watching in quick cut edits, and Stone Cold Steve Austin's bests fighting moves involve a leg lock and sleeper hold.
In a film that actually promotes the idea of people killing each other and really nothing more, it seems imperative to me that there should be lots of bloodshed. The creators of the film came up with an idea to limit the actual amount of blood. This should have been creative but instead seems to water down what action there is in the film. Between fight scenes, we get the pleasure of watching one dimensional characters fight about whether or not it is morally reprehensible to watch convicted felons kill each other, as they watch morally reprehensible people kill each other."The Condemned" may not be a total disappointment as long as you know that instead of an action packed fight to the death is a generic action flick and enough awkward moments to make any enjoyable action secondary. I'm not bitter about that at all and If ever there were a contemporary version of a grind house movie, this is it.