Annie get your gun, and sub-machine gun…

By By Glen Bellamy

By Glen Bellamy

If Michael Davis were in some sort of creative arts class and his assignment was “find as many unique, creative ways to kill human beings,” he would undoubtedly walk out of the class with an easy A. Teacher’s pet. Dean’s list.

His latest movie, “Shoot ‘Em Up,” would be his thesis. And as statements on the meaning of life and death go, this one…OK, fine, profound it’s not. But, as a ridiculously over-the-top, horrifyingly entertaining wet dream for the action-movie set? Well on those grounds, “Shoot ‘Em Up” is incomparable.

As we all know, Clive Owen is in the business of saving babies. He did it in “Children of Men” and he’s at it again this time as he rescues a baby from a team of contract killers led by bloodthirsty psychopath/adoring husband Hertz (Paul Giamatti, playing wonderfully and gleefully against type). Of course, Hertz will not stop there, nor will Smith (Owen).

So with the help of his ever-lactating fetish callgirl ex-girlfriend (Monica Bellucci), he makes it his duty to save the baby from Hertz, his murderous friends and ironically, the gun lobby at all costs…even if he has to cradle the baby in his arms while leaping through the air, dodging hundreds of bullets and mowing down as many killers as possible.

So, it’s that kind of movie.

The one-liners are deliberately terrible, the sexual innuendo (and activity) is eye-opening and the CGI is cartoonish, but the action is endlessly creative. It’s like that 2004 movie “Running Scared,” only without taking itself so damn seriously.

There’s also more testosterone on display in “Shoot ‘Em Up” than in a weeklong Tarantino/Woo/Verhoeven film festival. Davis might as well have gone all out and had Owen and Giamatti run around with giant erections.

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