Friday 14 January 2022

REVIEW: Fortress - Starring Jesse Metcalfe and Bruce Willis,

Review By Jon Donnis
Fortress is the latest film to star Bruce Willis in what I can only imagine was a few days of filming. It seems that a lot of his films these days he signs on for, knowing he will complete filming of his parts in less than a week.

Apparently, Fortress is the first of a trilogy of films, with the first two films, filmed back-to-back, and the third already completed. With a relatively small budget, this does seem smart.

Fortress is directed by James Cullen Bressack and written by Alan Horsnail, and based on a story by Emile Hirsch and Randall Emmett.

Bruce Willis stars as Robert Michaels, a retired CIA agent who lives in a secret retirement village in the middle of the woods. His estranged son Paul, played by Jesse Metcalfe decides to come to the village to visit his father, straight away Paul realises things are a bit strange as the retirement village is surrounded by high security, fences and guards. Once inside he tries to convince his father to invest in his business.

Paul however has been followed by his father's old nemesis Frederick Balzary played by Chad Michael Murray, Balzary and his team of highly skilled killers launch an all-out attack on the village with the purpose of capturing Robert. But since this is a secret, high tech retirement village, there is a 70-year-old high tech bunker which everyone escapes to. The rest of the film is a battle between the good guys and the bad guys. 

A nice addition to the cast is 90210 legend Shannen Doherty who plays Gen. Barbara Dobbs.

The Good
This is more of a Jesse Metcalfe film, than it is a Bruce Willis film, and despite the low budget, a lot of the acting is of a decent quality, the action scenes are good, and the story if a bit cliche at times, is passable.

The Bad
Some of the scenes with Bruce Willis you can tell were filmed separately to the rest of the cast and then spliced in. There are also a few moments where it seems that entire scenes may have been cut, and characters move from one location to another with no real explanation.

The film is a low budget, action film, with a few decent big-name actors in it. It is never gonna set the world on fire, however it is still a decent film, with some good action scenes and even a few light hearted comedic moments.

I score Fortress a fair 7/10. I enjoyed it.

Out now in select theaters and on video on demand, released by Lionsgate Films.