Insanely violent … but I couldn’t stop watching.

I’ll be honest about this film, I am NOT a big action film fan nor do I like ultra-violent films.  In the Blood is clearly BOTH of these—especially the latter.  The amazing thing is that although the violence made me cringe, it was also a movie that kept me glued to the screen…and my adrenalin pumping!

The film stars Gina Carano and if you’ve never heard of Miss Carano, I wouldn’t be surprised.  She’s only done a few films, though she is famous…as an MMA and Muay Thai fighter!!  And, as you’d expect from a woman with such training, her skills are INSANELY good.  Heck, she seems tougher and more capable than all the male action stars of the genre—and she makes it all look so real!  By comparison, films by Van Damme and Steven Seagal look like kids’ films!!!  I also love Carano because although she is pretty, she’s NOT the Hollywood type.  She has real curves and looks like she’s NOT the product of plastic surgery and bulimia!!

In the Blood
Directed by
John Stockwell
Gina Carano, Cam Gigandet, Danny Trejo
Release Date
4 April 2014
Martin’s Grade: A-

The film is set on some fictional Spanish-speaking Caribbean nation or, perhaps, they intend it to be the Dominican Republic (there are three Spanish-speaking countries in the Caribbean—and it’s not Cuba and they said it wasn’t Puerto Rico in the movie*)—they never say.  Regardless, the place is corrupt…very, very, very corrupt.  It’s so corrupt that when an American tourist is kidnapped (or possibly killed), those responsible for it pay EVERYONE to pretend it never happened—even the cops!  So, this leaves Ana (Carano) all alone in a hostile country where practically no one seems able or willing to help.  The neat thing about the film is that it is wonderful at misdirection.  It’s a very smart film as again and again I was surprised by who was behind all this and why.  And, how it all ends is simply impossible to anticipate**.

Overall, this is a super-high action film with an amazing heroine—one that doesn’t stand around waiting to be saved by a man—and I love that.  Carano plays the real thing—and action hero in every sense of the word—and a darn scary one!!

So do I recommend the film?  Well, I don’t know.  Its violence level is off the charts and it’s certainly NOT a film for the kids, your mother or Father Flannigan!  Plus, even if you THINK you like action films, you might just find this one too intense, bloody and violent.  Often, Ana kills—much like Sonny Chiba did in his Street Fighter films.  But aside from the violence, it’s an exceptional film all around.  Heck, even NOW after the movie’s been over for some time, my heart is STILL pounding…it’s that intense and that well made.

*They said the film is NOT set in Puerto Rico and talked about how they can escape to the nearby island of Puerto Rico.  But, in reality, the film was actually made in Puerto Rico.  I don’t know what this will do for tourism!

**If you SERIOUSLY anticipated all the twists, turns and surprises in this film, drop me a line. You are DEFINITELY psychic and I want to talk to you about the Florida Lottery.

Review by Lead Entertainment Writer and Film Critic, Martin Hafer