REVIEW: Fierce Target
Starring: Emilio Lavizzi, Tamas Nadas, Chloe Gunther Chung, Bryan Hanna, Fabrice Sopoglian, Thom Mulligan, and Don Worley
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY: Emilio Lavizzi
Official Synopsis: FIERCE TARGET is a fast paced action feature film about a rebel car thief who helps an imperiled 12-year-old girl. As their two worlds collide they quickly become the targets of a crooked Senator and his security team who launches a ruthless campaign to destroy them.
THE REVIEW: I have mentioned numerous times in the past, that the best part of doing my action film website is being given the opportunity to be a platform for giving independent filmmakers a place to promote their products and give them an audience that they might not find otherwise. It’s easy to promote the big projects and I enjoy the Hell out of that too but the real pleasure comes from giving these hard working men and women a voice and a means to get their movies out there.
With that in mind, I give you FIERCE TARGET which is the passion project of martial arts expert and filmmaker Emilio Lavizzi who is a European immigrant who came to this great country to become a filmmaker and actor. At first glance, Lavizzi doesn’t strike you as an action hero but that’s OK because it’s great to see someone who doesn’t look like Stallone or Schwarzenegger dish it out in the adrenaline departnment. He does have a great head of hair and coming from myself who has none, I tip my cap to you sir.
Lavizzi wears all the hats with this project as he is the star, writer and director and with this first feature ftom his Wild Card production banner and he has teamed up with another European martial artist to serve up a heaping helping of guilty pleasure viewing. Lavizzi’s partner in crime is Tamas Nadas who is a co-star and producer as well and he is also a three-time world champion and eight-time European Champion. Also, he was a US National Brazilian Ju-Jitsu Champion in 2012. When it comes to the fight game, these two are the real deal.
In terms of story, Fierce Target offers up a Transporter-esque plot especially one to the likes of Transporter 2 where Lavizzi, who plays a car theif and martial arts expert named Pietros Komos. To keep it simple, Pietros finds himself the protector of a young girl named Mira (Chung) who is forced to go on the run when she bares witness to a sleazy Senator (Worley) killing his adulterous wife. When Mira’s parents are killed by the Senator’s henchmen, she is forced to put her trust into down and out Pietros who is a man who has nothing to lose.
With the plot out of the way, we can now talk about the strengths and weaknesses of the film and while there are numerous issues with the film, I still found myself enjoying the movie. I always tell people that I have loved many a bad movie just because the action was awesome in it. In Fierce Target’s case, this is a film that was made by some seriously dedicated individuals who love what they do and while the acting, editing and special effects are suspect at best, the action set pieces is what the film builds its strengths on. It’s easy to tear apart someone else’s creation and you’ll read a lot of reviews that will rip this one apart but I am here to tell you that if given a chance, this film will certainly become a guilty pleasure viewing experience for you. Lavizzi poured his heart and soul into this and while it may not be Triple Threat, it doesn’t have to be. This is guerilla style filmmaking at its most brutal and that helps it in the long run.
I’m not gonna talk about the acting or anything like that because with this film it’s all about the action and in that department, Lavizzi, Nadas and the stunt team deliver the down and dirty goods. I’ve seen countless fight films in my over 35 years of movie watching and with this little project that could, I can honestly tell you that they have something going here. This film has the look and feel of some of those wonderful 80’s and 90’s lower budgeted action flicks that you never admitted to liking. You know the ones I’m talking about. I have numerous titles in my collection to this day that are only there cause of the fights and action and I’ll argue for each and every one of them like I’m doing for this one.
Lavizzi and Nadas are truly exceptional in the fighting realm and when they start to move on screen, action fans are in for a real treat as the choreography is grounded in brutal realism and intricate movements. There is some flash of course but I have always enjoyed the CQB aspect of the fight game and here we get some pretty impressive beatdowns. I’m not gonna lie, I even rewound some of the action because I enjoyed it so much. Don’t tell me that I don’t know what I’m talking about either because I have over 30 plus years of martial arts experience myself so I know a thing or two. Lavizzi and Nadas, who plays the main henchman, throwing down is certainly one of the strongest and most enjoyable moments of the movie and these two guys really went all out into making sure they could deliver the best they could with what they had.
I’m not gonna harp on the negatives like I said before but a lot of the acting is way over top, some in a good way and a lot in the bad way and there are are some rather messy subplots that didn’t need to be there at all as it looked like Lavizzi was trying to inject more depth into the storytelling. Viewers might find themselves rolling their eyes at many parts but like I said stay for the action. I can sincerely tell you that for a little indie film like this, it’s very impressive. The film does have a running time of an hour and fifty minutes and that’s way too long for a film like this and I feel Lavizzi could have thrown out a lot of stuff and kept it tighter with the main plot.
To sum it all up, Fierce Target is not going to win any rewards and many out there will dismiss it because of its rocky production values but if you’re a real fan of the on screen fight game, I think you’ll enjoy it for what it is. These filmmakers bled, sweated and endured to put their vision on the screen for us to enjoy and I for one am going to support them till my last day. I am anxiously awaiting to see what Lavizzi does next and keep in mind, this is his first feature. With more practice, he has a real shot at becoming a force to be reckoned with in the action genre. This film is currently looking for distribution and I’ll do my part to see that Lavizzi’s vision gets noticed. Give Fierce Target a chance. It’s guilty pleasure viewing at its finest!
VERDICT: 3 Out Of 5 Stars
ACTION-FLIX APPROVED for some truly engrossing fight action!