Superstar Sylvester Stallone returns to the superheroic genre with The Samaritan. The actor plays the title role in this feature film with an original story by Bragi F. Schut (Escape Game). He plays a super-powered individual who died some twenty years earlier during a confrontation with his twin brother, Nemesis.
But young Sam Cleary (Javon “Wanna” Walton) is convinced that the Samaritan is still alive. The teenager investigates his town and lists the people who might be vigilante. When Joe comes to his aid when gang members attack him, Sam has no doubt.
The murderer Cyrus (Pilou Asbæk) is trying to get hold of Nemesis’ mace to obtain his powers, also hoping to start a popular revolt in the city. While he had done everything possible to lead an uneventful life, Joe must prepare for a new battle and, above all, assume his old identity…
The actor, Sylvester Stallone, is capable of the best and the worst and The Samaritan is somewhere in between, leaning a little more towards the worst. Fans will find it hard not to get attached to his character, a lonely old man who drags his tired carcass and likes to fix broken things. It’s also hard not to be touched by his relationship with young Sam, played by Javon “Wanna” Walton, Euphoria’s revelation that gives it his all and sometimes feels. But around them, there is, unfortunately nothing.
The opening credits make you want to see more about the confrontation in the fire between the Samaritan and Nemesis, revealed through flashbacks that only give you one desire: to see again the duel between John Spartan and Simon Phoenix in Demolition Man, which is stupid but much more generous.
In addition to its particularly limp action scenes, The Samaritan sees its sympathetic concept plummeted by minimal sets, a scenario that could not be more basic and a villain whose only motivation is the desire to succeed Nemesis. Pilou Asbæk delivers a ridiculous protest monologue, taking on a big voice under his mask and daring to approach Tom Hardy’s impressive performance in The Dark Knight Rises, which unfortunately does not have the desired effect. This is compounded by a predictable twist that reinforces the lack of surprise in the whole.
The superhero played by Sylvester Stallone is not likely to make a lasting impression, as the film by Julius Avery (Son of a Gun, Overlord) could have been made in the 80s. The Samaritan is nevertheless worth seeing on Prime Video.