Contrived, boring and a real waste of some decent acting talent, Roger Donaldson’s action thriller offers little action and few thrills despite an interesting setting and premise.

Cage stars as New Orleans schoolteacher Will Gerard, whose wife Laura (Jones) is raped and badly beaten. Cage is approached in the hospital by the mysterious Simon (Pearce), who offers to make the rapist pay. All Gerard has to do is say the word and Simon’s organisation will kill the man who attacked his wife. In return, they will ask a small favour in the future. After Gerard agrees, he discovers the price he has to pay is much higher than anticipated. While a post-Katrina New Orleans forms a fascinating backdrop – the climax takes place in a flood-damaged shopping mall – Justice is brought undone by  plotholes wide enough for Cage to drive his product-placement car through.

One unlikely twist follows another – the bad guys are clever enough to infiltrate the police but forget to lock the car-doors when they kidnap someone – as Gerard’s search for the truth soon becomes tedious. What’s really unforgivable is that Justice doesn’t give the likes of Jones and Pearce anything to sink their teeth into and is so low on proper action scenes. When the most exciting on-screen moment is a man trying to cross a busy road,
you know a film is in trouble.

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Guy Pearce, January Jones | 15 | 105mins

Good for: Those who are easily pleased

Review: Pierre de Villiers

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