Who told “Stone Cold” Steve Austin that it was okay for him to act in movies? I feel personally that whoever this Yes-man, publicist-type person trying to wring another dollar out of a profitable brand name should be dragged out into the street and be tarred and feathered. Yes, I am fully aware that the world of pro wrestling does require certain acting talents that Austin possessed enough of to carry him into the mainstream; but the one-dimensional nature of that form of acting is exactly why it doesn’t work for any other sort of film career. All I can say about Recoil is that is at least not his worst work, and a combination performance with Danny Trejo drags it up from awful into mediocre.
Ryan Varrett (Austin) stars as a former cop who dispenses his own form of vigilante justice to capture the people responsible for his family’s murders. Trejo plays off against him as Drayke, a generic sort of intimidating brown enemy person, but something about Trejo always makes me feel that he really just enjoys being in movies, and playing characters he’s good at; so at least you can sense that usual feeling coming from the screen as you get down to it. Despite a terribly generic plot, the pacing and structure of scenes is a bit better than usual, and I hope this means that Austin is learning how to pick movies of a slightly higher quality than usual; but I wouldn’t hold my breath.
The best description for this movie is functional; it hits a few fun action points, but doesn’t really leave any sort of lasting impression. My favourite role Austin ever played was as a parody of himself in Mtv’s Celebrity Deathmatch, and I hope at some point he realizes exactly why that worked so well, and tries to bring it into his movies. By then he might have something actually worth remembering.