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The Hard Corps
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Customer Reviews:

  • Amazing acting from Van Damme!!
    Don't let the other reviews of this movie fool you. Some JCVD fans may be dissapointed due to the minimal martial arts scenes in this film.However, this is not a martial arts movie, it is a suspense drama movie that contains more acting and less fighting. With that in mind, I see this film as a transition for Van Damme who appears to be stepping away from martial arts films and stepping toward suspense movies.

    Van Damme delivers an emotional yet highly entertaining
    performance as a military veteran who is haunted by an accidental bombing of innocent civilians and many children by terrorists. There are some flash back scenes which vividly show Van Damme's inner struggle to cope with the painful memory of war.
    Vivica Fox manages her famous brother who is an ex-athlete turned business man. The bad guys want to "eliminate" Vivica's brother by any means neccessary. Basically, Van Damme is hired as a bodyguard to protect her brother from the bad guys. That is where the movie takes a turn from action to drama. The supporting cast (including the bad guys) are believable. Also, there is a very shocking torture scene involving pitbulls!
    Van Damme has truly "stepped up to the acting plate", so to speak.

    I rate this movie 5 stars because of the gripping plot and as always, Van Damme shows that he is more than just an athlete & martial artist. He is a highly skilled actor who I see making several more entertaining suspense dramas.

    ...more info
  • Good Overall.
    I agree with one of the other reviews that says that to many fight scenes would have been unfit for the character. I really like this movie. Even though I wouldn't consider it one of my favorites, it was definately worth watching. I truly reccomend this movie to anyone who like van damme.


    Thanks for reading my review. ...more info
  • action movies
    In our household we enjoy watching jean claude van damme movies and this adds to the collection...more info
  • JCVD stepping a bit outside his comfort zone
    The Jean Claude Van Damme Review Matrix (JCVD-RM)

    1. Who is he? He's a hallucination-prone, recovering alcoholic, troubled former U.S. soldier Phillippe Sauvage who served in Afghanistan and a few times in Iraq.
    2. Which family member/friend must be avenged? His former Sergeant Major, with whom he served multiple tours, was killed in a shootout.
    3. Does he take his shirt off? Unbelievably, it doesn't happen.
    4. Does he have sex with a C-List actress? It was probably a deleted scene (or will be in the sequel), but JCVD hit the jackpot in this one and he hooked up with Tamara Barclay (Vivica A. Fox). C-List? Pshaw!!
    5. Is there a tournament? He trains several novice bodyguards like there is going to be a tournament, but it's just to protect the champ.
    6. Is training needed for this tournament? In a surprise twist, JCVD trains others!
    7. Does he do the splits in training or in the tournament? The actual splits aren't done, but in the penultimate battle, he does a kick that exposes "Big Jim and the Twins" to the enemy - close enough.
    8. Does he punch someone in the balls? No, but one of Wayne's booty-call girls field-goals a thug's balls somewhere near his esophagus.
    9. Does he do a series of flying or 360 kicks? Good ol' JCVD, he had me going for a while. He saved the 360-goodness for the very end.
    10. Is his enemy unbeatable? Hardly. A group of ignorant thugs who hold their pistols sideways do not a formidable enemy make.
    11. Does he overcome an injury or other hindrance? Aside from being fragile and suffering from PTSD, there are no real injuries of which to speak.
    12. Does he win? He basically assassinates everyone; so, I'd call that a win.

    A former boxer, Wayne Barclay, needs protection from a clich¨¦-ridden Suge Knight wannabe. Eventually, a battle-hardened Sauvage (JCVD sporting a huge, baseball-sized knot on his head throughout the movie) is hired and tasked to build his own security team. The people he plans on hiring are the "hardest of the hard corp," but that basically ends up being one former soldier buddy and a few people from Barclay's gym.

    To summarize this movie, I'd borrow a line from Wayne: it's like "pouring water on $*&# and calling it gravy". The convoluted plot, the stereotypical black characters, and the paint-by-numbers approach shouldn't work. It should be ridiculous. Adding JCVD's over-complicated character is brilliant. It's never enough for JCVD to have a drinking problem in a movie; the character has to be riddled with problems and responsible for the My Lai Massacre in order for JCVD to bite. Somehow, however, all of it together simply works.

    As far as production value goes, it's slightly better than average for JCVD. It steals bits from several other movies (The Bodyguard, Major League, Four Brothers, Rocky II, Romeo Must Die,New Jack City, Jungle Fever) but ends up providing a relatively new, enjoyable experience. Watch this movie. That's an order, soldier....more info
  • you will only enjoy it the first time
    While Van Damme continues to pump out movies to this day, the martial arts edge has worn off to the aging star, and action movies are become basic action. Fight scenes are more brawl-like than martial arts like, and gun fights seem to have taken more of role. This is extremely true of the Hard Corps, a very enjoyable action movie that has good action, but even better suspense. The acting and story itself are a bit weak, so this is a movie that is exciting the first time around, but may be difficult to watch over and over like the classic Van Damme films.

    Van Damme plays an ex-army troubled army officer, hired to protect a huge boxer in town named Wayne Barclay, who is famous for his skills and for puttin away his nemesis, Terell, who is a big time rapper. Terell gets out of jail and has revenge on his mind for the boxer. Phillip (Van Damme) puts together a team known as the Hard Corps to protect the boxer, but thins don't go so smoothly. There are a lot of scenes where Terell and his gang get real close to killing Wayne, creating lots of suspense. There are not a huge amount of fights, but you get a few good brawls from the main characters.

    This is a solid movie that is great to watch the first time around, especially if you love gang-type films with lots of rap for the soundtrack. I can't see this being very exciting though the 2nd time watching, since the suspense was really the only element that stuck out. ...more info
  • Okayyyyy movie
    Okay, firstly I'd rate this movie better if it had shown on BET and not been released as a dvd. The movie started off really great (except the low budget lighting or inconsistencies with). The plot is about an ex boxer who's not safe against a guy that wanted him to lose/win (i forgot isn't that bad!) so Vivica is the sister of the black retired boxer turned business owner needing protection from Van damme (who's crazy b/c he was in Iraq/Afghanistan). That back story should have been cut out. Of course the brother is hard headed so he's always getting close calls (which helps move the story even though that's dumb) Van damme doesn't do a split in this one.!!!

    Negatives
    the cover is kind of misleading to the storyline. I thought Vivica would be on the run and he needed to protect her (like that movie with William Baldwin and Cindy Crawford).

    Not enough storyline to warrant why Vivica would date Van Dammme. but it's typical van damme so you have to just go with it. I would have included something else maybe a scene where they're after her, and then they hold each other. that would warrant the kiss at the end!!!

    Okay movie! though definitely for BET channel. The first 40 minutes were great (except the lighting)...more info
  • The Hard Corps
    Jean Claude Van Damme plays an ex-soldier who takes a job as a bodyguard for an ex-boxer and businessman who is threatened by a rap artist who has just been released from prison.

    While this is not a great movie, not as good as "In Hell", it's entertaining enough and a step up from Van Damme's previous movie, "Second in Command". Van Damme fans should enjoy it. ...more info
  • JEAN-CLAUDE VANDAMME ROCKS IN THIS URBAN ACTION SPECTACLE!!!
    Wow!!! What an amazing film!!! Vandamme gives a knockout performance in this finely directed film!!! Sheldon Lettich has outdone the expectations for this movie with a final product that is WAY ABOVE par for a DTV action film. Character development that far surpasses that of most films of this genre. The action scenes were quite nice and this movie left nothing to be yerned for. Awesome!!!! Awesome!!! Awesome!!! Worthy of Theatrical release for sure!!!!!...more info
  • Last Van Damme for me
    Van Damme will keep making these awful pictures until fans like me quit buying them, I quit.

    The shame is that his new movies are most likely watched by his fans and yet very little in them appeals to fans, IMO. Why?...more info
  • Hard Corps?.....Still Hard Van Damme!
    I dont like to compare movies instead i would rather judge each on its own merits and quite frankly this Vann Damme movie im glad to have watched! Theres plenty of good action sequences and pretty believeble bad guys all helped make this a Vanny movie to see.
    Know one should expect J.C.V.D to be the absolute high kicker he was in premier heydays and should rather expect to see a more matured actor cum action star as in these newer offerings from Vanny are more story biased than balls-out action but with The Hard Corps action fiends will not be dissapointed!!A super effort from the best Martial Arts action /movie star ever to be silver screened..Worth every penny.....more info
  • What are people going on about?!
    Ok. I'll be honest with you. Its not Van Damme's best. I don't think he will have another film as great as the dizzy heights of Timecop or Hard Target. Please people, remember this is a direct to video film produced with a budget of under fifteen million US dollars and has a team of lackluster producers behind it which need all the help they can get from the ever-commited stars.
    Whilst I make these small points in the films defense it does have its problems. Van Damme seems to want to make films which are realistic, gritty and act well in them but the way he chooses to play the character is very strange. The character is virtually a walking zombie until he gets a gun in his hand or a tingle in his fists. But I'll give him my respect because you are a lot more suspicious of the character and Van Damme gives a sense of mystery to him. But then there is the action side of things as with any Van Damme film they come exciting but infrequent due to a running time of nearly two hours and relationships between teh characters more complicated than a Rubix cube. However, the action is swift and flowing and well directed and though there are not too many high kicks because Van Damme is playing a war-torn soldier and it would not suit his character, a few trademark kicks are thrown in to please the fans. The cool guns and the shoot first, ask questions later attitude of the characters remind me of the 80's action movies loaded with cheese and enough bullets to load every gun in the world once.

    Overall the film is very nice visually with stunning colours, good actors and the right amount of chemistry between them. It also has gritty fist fights, sparkling gun fights and an ever so slightly disappointing conclusion.
    Well, that's me finished rambling and when I started out writing this review I promised myself that I wouldn't go on with my own views on the movie industry and inject pointless lines which I think are witty into it but - I have done it.

    I'm not going to tell you to buy this film. You can decide that for yourself. But if you do buy it - enjoy.

    Thanks for reading my review!...more info
  • "Old Target" "Kitty Heart"
    I really enjoyed Jean-Claude's earlier films. But, they keep seeming to get worse and worse. The dude kicked like 3 times in the film. The best part of Jean-Claude's films are the fight scenes and these sucked. You know you are getting cheese whenever you watch any of his movies but instead of cheedar this was some moldy government crap! I'm really hoping he'll get with Steven Segal talk about how much they both suck, watch their old movies and then go back to thier roots!...more info
  • Not Hard Corps at All
    I am one of the biggest Van Damme fans and his movies continually let me down of late. The current case in point is The Hard Corps. If you have seen The Bodyguard (Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston) you have seen a much better movie, than this low budget rehash.

    The movie's plot, actor's performances (or lack thereof), and the poor DVD package (only special features are other direct-to-dvd movies, and not even the trailer for this movie), make this a rental only.

    Van Damme plays an ex-soldier from Desert Storm and he is hired to be a bodyguard to a former boxer, now community leader. He doesn't want Van Damme's protection, but his sister does (played by Vivica Fox--what happened to her since Kill Bill?). There are some fight scenes involving a rap mogul (yes, how could anyone make this up) whom the boxer had sent to prison years earlier, now that he has been released. Drive-by shootings and house break-in attacks sum up the plot. Van Damme is playing very low key, lacking the charisma he showed in his youth. He is not bad, but not good either. For fans looking for a lot of martial arts, you won't find it. A few punches and kicks, but nothing any more spectacular than what he did in Second In Command.

    If this is the best Van Damme can do these days, I suggest a retirement. Then maybe when he is in his 50's, he can come back like Arnold and Sly. Who knows. Do yourself a favor, do not expect anything but a B-movie action film....more info
  • What A Kiss Between Vivica and Jean Claude!
    Frankly I don't remember too much of this movie. The acting was bad, the story and directing were bad. What is it that Jean Claude does again? Is it martial arts or specializing in lousy movies. The most memorable thing for me was that very hot kiss at the end between Vivica Fox and Jean Claude. Now THAT is worth picking this movie up for. Other than that, it's all cliche and routine. You have seen this done a million times before. ...more info
  • Just about watchable.
    Again as a Van Damme fan I'm disappointed. Predicable movie, stupid story, boring characters, bad acting and all wrapped up in a cringe inducing script. As one reviewer noted below, this is basically a cheap rehash of the "The Bodyguard" with Van Damme playing another boring, personality void, some one stole all my cookies, haunted character that he believes is working miracles for him in the acting world. I preferred his movies when he was on drugs, at least he was entertaining! According to this movie, ex US Marines don't seem to know how to take cover in a shoot out and believe cars are bullet proof. Van Damme also muscled in on Seagals now perfected look of permanent constipation, in one scene Van Damme runs to a fallen friend, squats down next to him and does his acting scene which to me looks like he was caught short and needed to take a dump right there on the spot. As for Van Damme's fight choreography and legendary martial arts ability. Like Seagal, all gone. It's all legs and fists flying at the camera or fists hitting opponents in close up, or camera as tight as possible grappling were you can't see Van Damme's face. Come one people, Van Damme is a boring performer, he got to top by doing exciting martial arts action movies and fell from grace 10 years ago. He now earns more money making insomnia cures called Derailed, Second In Command and The Hard Corps available at your local Blockbuster....more info
  • The Hard Corps
    I enjoyed the movie very much. Even though Van Damme is noticeable aging, he was full of energy as he always was. Seems as though he hasn't lost a step physically, either! Razaaq Adoti played an excellent part as a tough s.o.b. I'd like to see him in more movies. Vivica A. Fox's acting was mediocore and lacklustre as usual. Nevertheless, I liked the plot and the action scenes. ...more info
  • The party is over
    I humbly admit that I am one of Jean Claude's biggest fans. From Cyborg to Replicant, I've stood by him and his array of slightly predictable yet wildly entertaining films. There were hiccups along the way such as Universal Soldier 2, Knock Off and Street Fighter, but overall, JC has put out some of the best action films of the late eighties and nineties.

    Unfortunately, I think it's time he throws in the towel and retires from the cinematic limelight. Compared to some of his recent flops, The Hard Corps isn't horrible; it's just bad. The movie is a stretch to hold your attention. You really don't care due to the poor acting, poor script and poor direction of Sheldon Lettich. (BTW, Mr. Lettich knocked out such classics as Bloodsport and Kickboxer, but he has hit the wall in terms of creativity.) Van Damme is known for his martial arts, but the last several films have portrayed him as too old to do what got him to where he is. Maybe he can't do the splits anymore; maybe he can't do a roundhouse anymore, and maybe we just couldn't care less anymore. Where are the vintage scenes from Timecop or Hard Target? These low-budget, B-movie excuses for plot-line are not only painful but boring. It's not even action any more when you can predict the next scene before it happens.

    JC, you are an icon. You're one of the best. I implore you to either return to your roots or give it up before you've ruined your reputation beyond repair. ...more info