Review: The Island
The Island (2023)
L.A.P.D. officer Mark (Michael Jai White) spends his time cracking down down on drug traffickers with his wise cracking partner Phil (Jackson Rathbone), but when his brother dies under mysterious circumstances, he returns to his Caribbean island home to try and solve the murder.
The island not only holds many family memories, it is also the place where the love of his life Akilah (Gillian White) still lives after he walked away from her following the tragic death of their newborn baby.
The Island has many of the tropes of lower budget action movies, but is raised in quality by the acting chops of real life couple Michael Jai White and Gillian White, both of whom can convincingly portray raw emotions, while also being more than capable of realistically kicking the ass of whoever is put in front of them onscreen…all helped by them both being martial arts masters away from the screen.
Kicking off (quite literally) with a drug bust sting gone wrong fight, Mark and Phil immediately show that they can physically hold their own against the odds, which naturally comes back into play later down the timeline.
This is swiftly followed by a violent and bloody outburst that quite frankly caught me off guard and had me immediately rewind it to appreciate the special makeup effects…which happened twice during this movie.
The antagonist role is taken by Edoardo Costa who plays Manual; an evil and corrupt tycoon who is slowly taking over the entire island with the help of his growing criminal empire. Costa makes a great ‘bad guy’ that you can hate and his characters actions really help to ramp up the “please let him get what he deserves” vibe as you watch.
While at its heart being a basic revenge movie, The Island kept me thoroughly entertained throughout, especially the bone breaking fight scenes starring Michael Jai White…someone put him in a big budget action franchise ASAP please!
A great beer and snacks movie with mates where you can boo at the bad guys and cheer on everyone else.
On UK digital platforms 29th January 2024.
Review by Dave from a review streaming link.