REVIEW: Sniper: Special Forces (2016) – ManlyMovie

REVIEW: Sniper: Special Forces (2016)


This movie is a cheap, ugly, nasty piece of misery.  It’s almost enough to break my willpower, even bothering with movies like this.  Considering some of the VODmit movies I review on here, maybe that’s saying something.  Now I know there are Steven Seagal students out there who will eat up anything the man appears in, even for comedy’s sake, but even to those people I implore you not to go near this black hole of awful.  This is the new breed of VOD movie, cast well beyond ‘so bad it’s good’ territory, where everything is filmed in some baron patch of land in probably not much more than a week.  We’re into the depths of pure shit here and if Steven Seagal envisages this type of work for the foreseeable, he needs to quit movies.

First, I do not know if this movie is related to the long-since sullied ‘Sniper’ series.  I would not be surprised if it wasn’t, I also would not care.  A special ops detachment is sent into a hot zone in Afghanistan to exfil a U.S. Congressman, the bad guys in the area are suggestively affiliated with ISIS, but the movie doesn’t bother trying to exert itself with real world issues.  What exactly is a U.S. Congressman doing in such a place?  Well, you see, for this, you need to stick with the putrid attempt at a twisty thriller.  The writing is a mess, truly wretched, with actors unfamiliar or uncaring about their own lines.  Aside from that, Steven Seagal, the ‘sniper’ of the show, is left behind enemy lines.  This is the method for writing him out of the movie, get it?  But yeah, it’s hard for me to explain how hard the movie goes after the weighty military thriller and how hard it fails at doing so.  I would try, but it doesn’t deserve it.

Anyone reading this is probably interested in Steven Seagal’s role.  Seagal is in the movie for what I suspect may be ten minutes, but I would call that generous.  Given how they attempted to make this glorified cameo look like a support role by spreading his ‘scenes’ out, it’s probably less in reality.  And boy, does Seagal look miserable, and he is reciting lines less complex than those of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s original Terminator.  This guy hasn’t even seen the fucking script, I can tell.  But I don’t know if I could blame him, he’s probably not the only one.  Am I to believe that Rob Van Dam, who at times looks wasted in this movie, sat in on round-table discussions for a group digest of this ‘thriller’?

This is a movie titled ‘Sniper: Special Ops’.  But where is the sniping?  There are shoot outs, but they come from the new school of VODmit where guys wave around guns and pretend they’re shooting, while post production makes it look like they were firing.  Nope, not even blanks.  So the one thing that the movie should have pursued is not only supplanted with bored actors standing around a truck in not-so-tense dramatic whodunnit parts, but the combat itself is atrocious, stinking, lazy and repellent.  Look at the artwork for this garbage to see how cheap this scam posing as a movie was.  They have photoshopped Seagal’s head onto someone elses body, and placed the name ‘Van Dam’ as second billing.  I don’t know if there are people out there as stupid as the producers of this movie hope, but I don’t think I’d like the answer.

With conviction and careful consideration, I think this is the worst movie Steven Seagal may ever have appeared in.