What You Need To Know:
(H, LL, VVV, A/D) Humanism; over 25 obscenities & 5 profanities; extreme, excessive, non-stop, bloody violence with terrible cruelty & in one scene man gets his ear cut off; also, several cold-blooded murders committed while perpetrators laugh at victims' plight; and, some scenes with drinking.
The movie HARD TARGET is a Jean-Claude Van Damme retread of innumerable man-hunts-man films which begins in New Orleans where a nasty entrepreneur named Fouchon organizes urban “safaris” for seriously macho millionaires. They provide lots of cash; he provides a human quarry, trackers, weapons, and an out-of-town alibi. After newcomer Natalie comes into a local bar flashing a walletfull of bills, she is attacked by thugs, but Van Damme, as Chance Boudreaux, rescues her. She hires him to look for her missing father, a homeless man. The police tell her that her father died in a fire, but Boudreaux finds out that he was murdered and sets out to find the killer. The rest of a film is one big, spectacular chase as the killers track Boudreaux.
HARD TARGET shows off hero Jean-Claude Van Damme as a one-man killing machine and points up once more the extreme brutality along with the cheapness of human life that now exists on the screen. While moviegoers laugh and cheer, Van Damme hits, kicks and shoots victim after victim. Lacking much plot (or meaningful dialogue), HARD TARGET’s pace and timing are good; and Hong Kong film director John Woo, known for his fast-action-packed films, and Jean Claude would appear a union made in Hollywood. As someone has noted about the union between actor and director: “art-house mindless violence meets B-movie blind ambition.”