When it comes to VOD movies, sometimes they can be fun, other times they can suck really hard. Acceleration falls somewhere in the middle, and perhaps that’s down to lead actress/producer Natalie Burn. A former ballet dancer from Ukraine, Burn proved her acting/action/producing chops in 2016’s Awaken (or Left to Die as it’s called in the UK), a mildly enjoyable little action flick which Burn got off the ground thanks to her production company 7Heaven Productions, proving Burn to be more than just an action star. Now Burn has come back with Acceleration, which sees her trying to fulfill assignment contracts in one night in a bid to save her son from her mysterious boss, who has a deep connection to our anti-heroine.
It’s pretty bog-standard B-movie schlock, and much like with Awaken, Natalie Burn remains the best aspect about the film. Completely selling her character’s lethal, deadly expertise with tremendous aplomb, Burn displays fierce weight and physicality, not to mention an air of supreme prowess and confidence whenever she’s kicking ass or shooting firearms, making us believe that this is a person who has been training and strengthening her skills for many years. Burn’s fight choreography feels graceful as well as violent, which lends credibility to her ballet background.
Frankly, it’s a miracle that Burn is carrying this movie on her shoulders because everything else kind of falls short. The story is all incredibly predictable and formulaic, and despite the presence of many stars on screen like Dolph Lundgren, Danny Trejo and Sean Patrick Flanery, none of them are enough to help elevate what is essentially a by-the-numbers plot. There’s even a twist, later on, involving both Burn and Lundgren’s characters and why their dynamic is so personal, but it’s incredibly obvious from a mile away. The action is fun and offers a nice diversion from the meandering plot, even down to having Lundgren going up against Chuck Liddell, but that might prove to be an issue for any certain audience member who wants more than just mindless action.
In the end, Acceleration is passable at best, being at its most effective whenever there’s an action sequence happening, which are all expertly choreographed. Most of which are carried off with aplomb thanks to Natalie Burn, who helps save this movie from entering mediocrity. If Burn was just given a great script by a more experienced screenwriter, then she and her production company could make something special and unique, but right now, they just aren’t there yet. However, there’s room for improvement.
Dir: Michael Merino, Daniel Zirilli
Scr: Michael Merino
Cast: Natalie Burn, Dolph Lundgren, Chuck Liddell, Sean Patrick Flanery, Quentin “Rampage” Jackson, Danny Trejo, Dobromir Mashukov
Prd: Natalie Burn
Music: Gregory De Iulio
Country: United States
Runtime: 85 minutes
Acceleration will be available on DVD on April 6th.