As Roy Pulver, he’s woken up by people wanting to kill him, including a helicopter shooting up his apartment, but as we meet him, he’s experienced this start to his day 140 times in a row, so he’s expecting it. What he doesn’t know is why this keeps happening, and while he’s learned his wife – Jemma Wells (Naomi Watts) – has died, he’s never lived long enough to figure out why.
Talking of death, he’s stuck in a Death Loop also for reasons unexplained at the start, and keeps experiencing the last day before he dies over and over. Meanwhile, Jemma’s place of work is a facility which can “unmake time and space” as well as destroy reality if improperly used, and is run by Colonel Clive Ventor (Mel Gibson – playing it very gruff as usual of late), a character who’s untrusting of everyone. His sidekick is Brett, played by Will Sasso, who I kept mistaking for mad ranty Alex Jones.
In a flashback to the day before, we learn what’s going on at Jemma’s workplace, and how she has a very specific security detail job planned that’s extremely covert.
Meanwhile, on the ‘Groundhog Day’ in question, for Roy’s journey, in trying numerous attempts and paths to get to – and defeat – Ventor, it is like playing a videogame that doesn’t have one set path, and so you will try many different ways to complete your task and kill the baddie.
To that end, part of this journey includes a pop-up E-sports tournament (which is surprisingly well-decorated for a pop-up), with an Atari 2600 joystick on the poster, and Dai Feng (Michellle Yeoh) training him to fight with a sword. That’s because at certain times, his attempts include some martial arts swordplay with the stunning Guan Yin (Selina Lo), and every time she defeats any opponent, she always concludes, “I am Guan Yin! And Guan Yin has done this!”
Each day, despite dying, Roy learns from his past mistakes and errors, and to my surprise, Frank Grillo s very entertaining in this. Add in the time-bending aspect of it – which is always a plus for me – and I highly recommend this slice of B-movie fun.
Boss Level is on Amazon Prime Video now, but the film isn’t yet available to pre-order on Blu-ray or DVD.
Running time: 94 minutes
Release date: August 13th 2021
Studio: Amazon Prime Video
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
Director: Joe Carnahan
Producers: Joe Carnahan, Randall Emmett, George Furla, Frank Grillo
Screenplay: Chris Borey, Eddie Borey, Joe Carnahan
Music: Clinton Shorter
Roy Pulver: Frank Grillo
Colonel Clive Ventor: Mel Gibson
Jemma Wells: Naomi Watts
Brett: Will Sasso
Alice: Annabelle Wallis
Dave: Sheaun McKinney
Guan Yin: Selina Lo
Dai Feng: Michelle Yeoh
Chef Jake: Ken Jeong
Pam: Meadow Williams
Gabrielle: Mathilde Olliver
Joe: Rio Grillo
Esmerelda the Chauffeur: Armida Lopez
Mr. Good Morning: Buster Reeves
Roy #2: Eric Etebari
German Twin #1: Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson
German Twin #2: Rashad Evans
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.