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Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
18
Cast
Gerard Butler
Milo Ventimiglia
Alison Lohman
Terry Crews.
Directors
Brian Taylor
Mark Neveldine.
Screenwriters
Mark Neveldine
Brian Taylor.
Running Time
95 minutes

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Gamer
You too can make Gerard Butler obey your every whim


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Plot
In the future, Kable (Gerard Butler), a convict, is mentally linked with a player who controls him in a violent, live-action computer game. He tries to escape from the program and hook up with the resistance to the schemes of megalomaniac games tycoon Castle (Michael C. Hall).


Review
The Neveldine/Taylor team, of the Crank movies, deliver another sci-fi mash-up, scrambling elements from eXistenZ and The Running Man in a busy, exciting, slide down the cutting edge.

Given that Jason Statham has already played an unjustly-convicted death row gladiator out to beat the system in Death Race, N/T have to use the less instantly charismatic Gerard Butler as a blank icon hero, but Six Feet Under/Dexter star Michael C. Hall finally gets a worthy movie role as an eccentric puppet-master villain. 

It’s not as immediately gripping as Crank and has one crucial lapse of imagination – the main game seems like a conventional first-person shooter – but has astonishing moments (Hall miming to Sammy Davis Jr as his choreographed kill-squad batter Butler) and concepts.


Verdict
An injection of adrenaline straight to the eye – which isn’t entirely a bad thing.


Reviewed by Kim Newman


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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Gamer
Empire Star Rating

RE: Pants

See your point, but there was nothing new or interesting about it to make the effort of going to the cinema worthwhile for me....... ... More

Posted by bretty at 00:06, 23 September 2009 | Report This Post


Pretty awful

I must say I was hugely disappointed by this. I usually love big dumb action movies. I have a soft spot for Statham and his Transporter/Crank/Death Race antics. I even enjoyed the silliness of GI Joe. This film had a fairly good concept and with Butler and Hall a half decent cast, but it lacked what I think is most important in action movies - Fun! Where were the physics defying stunts? where were the awful but hilarious one-liners? And where the hell was the action for that matter? It seemed th... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by HitchHiker at 21:16, 22 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Pants

Ok i liked it but basically this film is butler with a big gun walking about a bit then shooting for a bit then walking then shooting then walking then shooting then walking........and so on and so on for about hour 20mins??in other words just like playing a first person shooter? Now i know thats what its supposed to be but it isnt as exciting as actually playing one of those games and watching it in live action and thats the real prob with the start of this film its kinda boring??? sure theres... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Frank Castle at 22:04, 21 September 2009 | Report This Post


Pants

Some clever ideas blended until they become bollocks. A good cast wasted on a poor film. This could have been interesting but assumes it is far cleverer then it is and does not hold sufficient audience interest. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by bretty at 19:52, 21 September 2009 | Report This Post


Did you watch a different movie?

Two words... utter pap! I have never seen a worse movie. The 'plot' (to use the term loosely) was non-existent, the acting awful - particularly from Michael C Hall - and the script attrocious. There seemed to be no point to any of it. The scene with the Sammy Davis Jr miming was laughably poor and utterly pointless. I cannot understand what possessed Gerard Butler and Michael C Hall to sign up for it. How you can give this 3 stars is beyond me. It seems like a good idea in theory but so... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by poppyxxx at 16:35, 21 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Gamer

4/5 I liked it! Although I was never really sure which "side" the film was trying to take. For every heavy blow of satire, the film throws something so excessive in your face that it underminds its own commentary. The "Society" bits were depressing as... well... it wasn't a million miles away from the actual SECOND LIFE game, albeit made WRONG by the use of puppet people. The "Slayer" bits looked great, but also freaked me out a bit. As a gamer, I couldn't get Call of Duty 4 out ... More

Posted by MoBiUGeArSkIn at 17:06, 20 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Gamer

For a film where so much stuff happens, Gamer is a crushingly dull movie. It's also a film that trips over it's own satirical leanings. Here Neveldine and Taylor would like to think that their movie is a damning look at the violence of videogames and the misogynistic treatment of women. Two very noble intentions. The problem is that Gamer is a film that wallows in gratuitious violence. A film where we're asked to identify with a hero who solves problems with violence. It's also a film whe... More

Posted by Wave of Mutilation at 14:40, 20 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Gamer

Saw this the other day and really enjoyed it. While Gamer isn't particularly original as its a collage of similar films, the style Nevaldine and Taylor bring from their Crank films give it an edgy, modern feel that keeps the film on its toes. I'm not usually a fan of MTV-style quick cutting but there's something about the style the two directors use that seems very technically cutting edge, leaving no fat on its small run time, that I find interesting and appealing - very Run Lola Run or ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by kenada_woo at 11:56, 20 September 2009 | Report This Post


It Kicks Ass.

I saw Gamer this afternoon and really enjoyed every second of it. It kicks major ass, it makes your heart race and has a thundering soundtrack. Michael C Hall was brilliant in his role, his moment is funny and genius it should make Hollywood notice him more in the film department. Gerard Butler is back in action roles with real bite and total charsmia thrown at you, after doing some rom-coms that haven't appealed to everyone apart from me and a good number of his fans, this is his hard-nut best ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by joanna likes films at 17:59, 19 September 2009 | Report This Post


GAME OVER....

I think it's fair to say that there is a gem of a good idea in this movie..... but that's all there is!!! The film makers are far too preoccupied with flashy visual EFX and snap editing to give us anything that remotely resembles a plot with half way believable characters THAT WE SHOULD CARE ABOUT. Never thought I'd say this but - bring back Arnold!!! Even though it was made over 20 years ago The Running Man is ten times better than this souless drivel. When I came out at the end, the impression... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ROTGUT at 17:51, 19 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

I've finally found a film to knock "The Sin Eater" of my worst film ever perch.   Awful & patronising...avoid at all costs. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bumfluff at 15:26, 19 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

Gamer, "not as good as Crank" says KN, Awesome... gn=right] ... More

Posted by spamandham at 19:30, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

It wasn't just you - because people recognise Newman's name they seem to notice more than others.   If you think of the mag and those half page 4 column in a row reviews - this seems pretty much the equivalent of one of those?   My favourite of his columns was the little known noir one  ... More

Posted by elab49 at 16:18, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

L: elab49 So you think he just gets asked for a review and writes as much as he likes and the magazine shapes the rest of the pages round unpredictable review lengths?he reviewers are asked to provide a review of a particular length. So why not turn your ire to the appropriate target? Although I'd hardly choose this particular film as the bastion of your defence. didn't mean to get anyone's back up, I was only having a chuckle on account that this is the upteenth review I've read of... More

Posted by gordonsalive at 15:52, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

about the quadruple entry, I don't know why that is) p; It's normally you refreshing at the wrong time. p; I've been lead on here - I clicked the review because of that quote and it isn't in it!   It seems reasonable to suggest more for the website, but that would still be Empire's call rather than Newmans? ... More

Posted by elab49 at 13:36, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

L: elab49 So you think he just gets asked for a review and writes as much as he likes and the magazine shapes the rest of the pages round unpredictable review lengths?he reviewers are asked to provide a review of a particular length. So why not turn your ire to the appropriate target? Although I'd hardly choose this particular film as the bastion of your defence. sp; Surely this review is on the website, though, and doesn't need to be shaped around the pages of the magazine. ... More

Posted by clownfoot at 13:29, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

So you think he just gets asked for a review and writes as much as he likes and the magazine shapes the rest of the pages round unpredictable review lengths?p; The reviewers are asked to provide a review of a particular length. So why not turn your ire to the appropriate target? Although I'd hardly choose this particular film as the bastion of your defence. ... More

Posted by elab49 at 12:11, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


Regarding the postion of replacing Mr. Newman

Dear Sir/Madam, I would like to apply for the position of reviewer to replace Mr. Newman, (or help him out as he appears to be busy). I can send you my up to date C.V although it will take more then 7 seconds to read. Yours Sincerely The Staths Charismatic Left Testicle ... More

Posted by gordonsalive at 11:17, 18 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Just OK

Ahh Kim Newman reviews, the only reviews where you click on 'Read the rest of the review' from the opening page and then get a full six words more than the plot synopsis.g to see this on Sunday, I expect nothing more than loud and stupid action from the guys behind Crank. Is it true that Hall's scenes only add up to about 10 minutes screentime? Shame if it does as I love that bastard. ... More

Posted by captainrentboy at 19:16, 17 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE: Just OK

Ahh Kim Newman reviews, the only reviews where you click on 'Read the rest of the review' from the opening page and then get a full six words more than the plot synopsis.g to see this on Sunday, I expect nothing more than loud and stupid action from the guys behind Crank. Is it true that Hall's scenes only add up to about 10 minutes screentime? Shame if it does as I love that bastard. ... More

Posted by captainrentboy at 19:16, 17 September 2009 | Report This Post


Just OK

Gamer is one of those films that comes across, at times, like it thinks it has something to say. Iruth is, it doesn't. It is a loud, dumb, violent action movie. Nothing wrong with that. What is frustrating about it though (aside from virtually none of the characters being more than one dimensional) is that, as the review suggests, it has some great moments and concepts. Therein lies it's major flaw. There is almost too much going on, so many ideas trying to breathe that none of them real... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Gazdance at 17:51, 17 September 2009 | Report This Post


Thought as much, I enjoyed it. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Ethanial at 17:31, 17 September 2009 | Report This Post


Anytime!

Jeez, is the frackin' review ever going to be posted! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bliff at 14:22, 17 September 2009 | Report This Post


Rubbish

Strong contender for worst film of the year up against Push. Butler has about as much charisma as a genital wart. Felt sooo long despite being 90mins long and the camera work gave me a headache. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Blyman at 22:50, 16 September 2009 | Report This Post


RE:

  I doesn't even fit, never mind ... More

Posted by Robert De Nijman at 16:48, 16 September 2009 | Report This Post


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