In FIFTY-FIFTY, the CIA pays two American mercenaries, Frenchy and Jake, to topple a dictatorship in the Republic of Tengara–an island banana republic located in the Pacific Ocean. After the mercenaries arrive in Tengara, they train scraggly native men in preparation to overthrow the dictator. Back in Washington, the dictator’s men have cut a deal with Washington to become a U.S. stooge and the word comes down from the Oval office to stop the attack a la the “Bay of Pigs.” General mayhem develops for the guerrillas as their assault on the capital is thwarted by other U.S. military equipment working for the dictator’s side. Jake and Frenchy do some introspection, flip a coin (hence the “FIFTY-FIFTY” title) and thus decide to stick it out and topple the Dictator anyway. With considerable blood, gore and extremely foul language, they do just that.
FIFTY-FIFTY is just another of those mercenaries-in-a-banana-republic- playing-cowboys-and-Indians’- shoot’em-up.” Worse, there is apparently a choice made 1/4 of the way into the film to shift from a “Bumbling-Mercenaries-in-a-Banana-Republic” to a “Mercenaries-taking-themselves-seriously” film. Although the gags in the first 1/4 weren’t much, they beat the relentless march toward mediocrity in the latter 3/4 of the film. This type of film has been done much better before with a better plot, better scenery and even with more violence.
(A/D, LLL, M, S, VVV) Approximately 75 obscenities & over 25 profanities: torture, summary execution, oppressive government military forces systematically persecuting the general population; a completely amoral CIA at upper levels, soldiers attempt to kidnap a twelve-year-old girl, & major character contemplates bestiality with a goat as a substitute for female companionship; the bad guy gets blown up in slow motion by a 2" artillery shell. Very graphic violence.