Year:  2022

Director:  Matt Eskandari

Rated:  MA

Release:  January 2023

Distributor: Eagle Entertainment

Running time: 96 minutes

Worth: $10.00
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Kevin Dillon, Bruce Willis, Shelby Cobb, Oliver Trevena, Texas Battle~

Sure, you’ll probably get some enjoyment out of this, but it’s unlikely to be in the way the filmmakers would have hoped.

When it was announced in March of this year that Bruce Willis was retiring after being diagnosed with aphasia, it was a shock to a number of people. The action star known for his snarky mouth in the likes of Die Hard and The Last Boy Scout was now tackling a condition that damages the part of the brain that controls comprehension and language. It kind of made more sense why Willis was adding his name to an ocean of films that came out between 2020-2022. Films like Wire Room, directed by Matt Eskandari (Hard Kill, another Willis joint).

 Wire Room is one of a few films produced before Willis’ retirement – three of which form a holiday themed action trilogy – that are battling for the title of Bruce Willis’ Last Film Ever! It’s a strange thought that each film that will come out over the next 12 months will bring us one step closer to that eventuality. Given his diagnosis, there is unlikely to be another renaissance via Wes Anderson or Tarantino. This isn’t like Dolph Lundgren making DTV movies in between Expendables sequels, or Segal retiring to Russia to be the legend he always assumed he was. This is it for Bruce.

Does that mean that Wire Room is impenetrable from criticism? Absolutely not. Any feelings of pathos are overshadowed by odd choices that make the film a curiosity.

While Willis is the pull name here, the real hero of the film is Special Agent Justin Rosa (Kevin Dillon). Rosa has been recently assigned to a high tech command centre led by Willis’ gruff Shane Mueller. Mueller is a gnat’s hair away from retirement and before he goes, he wants to close his last case. Believing that Irish cartel member Eddie – played by the very obviously not Irish Oliver Trevana – has dirt on a bunch of corrupt cops, Mueller has been staking out his pad with numerous mics and cameras. All Rosa has to do is keep watching the cameras and listen out for anything incriminating. Rosa manages to fail this spectacularly and when Eddie’s life is in danger, the special agent must help him from fifty miles away.

Nothing really works in this party bag of action movie tropes. In particular, Dillon appears to be phoning it in from another time zone. Admittedly, his scenes with Willis are hampered by the fact that both actors were clearly filmed on separate days, but for some unknown reason Dillon appears to be channelling his brother’s performance from There’s Something About Mary. It’s almost as if he’s in a completely different movie from everyone else.

In terms of action, those looking for it will be left wanting. Wire Room starts with a shoot out involving Willis and Dillon, which is then repeated in the final act; reminding the audience of the Friends joke that if you watch Die Hard twice in a row, then you’ve watched Die Hard 2. Elsewhere, Trevana simply runs around a few rooms, punching armed police and grumbling in an Oirish accent not heard outside of Blown Away.

Overall, it’s a shame to report that this is another Willis DTV flick that never really engages. Sure, you’ll probably get some enjoyment out of this, but it’s unlikely to be in the way the filmmakers would have hoped.