‘Mean Machine’

Mack Bates
(The Leader)

Mean Machine (2002, Rated R, 99 minutes) available from Paramount Home Video

Stars: Vinnie Jones, David Kelly, David Hemmings, Vas Blackwood, Jason Fleming, Danny Dyer, and Jason Statham

Plot: An imprisoned ex-soccer star (Jones) is asked by the warden (Hemmings) to coach the prison guards’ soccer team, he agrees to do so with one condition: that he also gets to coach his fellow inmates and that they get to take on the guards in a no-holds-barred match.

Features: Disc contains two separate versions of the film?the UK Theatrical Version, and the US Theatrical Version.

Final Word: An adaptation of the classic Burt Reynolds film, The Longest Yard (1974), Mean Machine benefits from the bulldog intensity that star Jones brings to his role. So memorable from his turns in director Guy Ritchie’s Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels (1998) and Snatch (1999), Jones steps up to the plate and scores as the cocky player turned equally cocky prisoner. Mean Machine is an entertaining film that gets better with each viewing.

?Rating: 3.5 briefs (out of 5)