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Hero Wanted (2008)

Cuba Gooding Jr. , Ray Liotta , Brian Smrz  |  R |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Cuba Gooding Jr., Ray Liotta, Tommy Flanagan, Norman Reedus, Kim Coates
  • Directors: Brian Smrz
  • Writers: Chad Law, Evan Law
  • Producers: Avi Lerner, Boaz Davidson, Danny Dimbort, Danny Lerner, David E. Ornston
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo), English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: April 29, 2008
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0013D8LMC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,615 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Hero Wanted" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Commentary with Director Brian Smrz and Cuba Gooding Jr.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Cuba Gooding, Jr. stars in this suspenseful crime thriller as a small town trash collector who stages a robbery so that he can impress a girl by being the hero, until the perfect plan takes an awful turn. After he awakens in a hospital, a man tracks down and murders the criminal that left him and a bank teller for dead during a robbery, only to end up having the slain thief's associates come after him in retaliation. Also starring Ray Liotta (Smokin' Aces, Revolver) and Tommy Flanagan (Smokin' Aces, Gladiator)

There are hidden agendas and devastating twists in this gritty thriller from the "simple plan gone awry" school. Liam (Cuba Gooding Jr.), who was left a broken man after his pregnant wife drowned, gets a new lease on life after he saves a child from a burning car. When he later intervenes in a botched bank heist, resulting in the shooting of a female teller and himself, his hero wish becomes a death wish as he tracks down the gang members. But Liam is no Charles Bronson.

Gooding indelibly captures Liam’s bald desperation (his character’s short-lived glory and downward spiral echoes his own misguided film career). First-time director Brian Smrz is a former stunt coordinator, and the film’s punishing fight scenes deliver the down and dirty goods. Jean Smart is excellent as the comatose teller’s mother, while Tommy Flannigan, as a wildly Scottish thug, entertainingly feasts on the scenery. Ray Liotta, as a veteran cop investigating the escalating carnage, does his best with such B-movie groaners as, "One minute he’s a hero in the news, the next he’s inside a bottle with no exit." "Redemption," Liam states at one point, "Sometimes you have to go through hell to get it." It doesn’t get any more hellish than Boat Trip, Daddy Day Camp or those Hanes underwear commercials, but Gooding finally gets some with his best starring performance since Radio. --Donald Liebenson

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Itchy Trigger Finger November 24, 2008
"Hero Wanted" is a bumpy, but gripping DVD. Cuba Gooding Jr. stars in the lead role as Liam Case, a trash collector who has a good day & a bad day. As the film begins, he rescues a child from a burning car. He wears the hero recognition uncomfortably. The film unfolds so that the audience moves deeper into the story as we see the relationships that were not apparent. Case lost his wife in a tragic accident in which she drowned while trapped in their car. Gooding starts moving out of his shell as he develops a crush on Kayla McQueen played by Christa Campbell. Unfortunately, when he goes to the bank where she works, she is shot in the head during the heist, confined in a coma. We come to learn how his buddy Swain that works with him on the trash truck, well played by Norman Reedus, has taken Case's idea on how to impress a girl to another level by bringing in the McGraw brothers. Steven Kowalski plays the leader Lynch while his younger brother Skinner played by Kim Coates discharges his gun during the bank heist, unfortunately fatally wounding Kayla. Detective Terry Subcott played by Ray Liotta tries to piece together the relationships of the crime. Case goes after younger brother Skinner in the factory where he sleeps and then after Lynch in a bar. Faced with a string of bodies, Subcott starts looking more closely at the vigilante played by Gooding. Tommy Flanagan whose scarface makes Derek looks like a crazed killer with an itchy trigger finger takes over the gang & lures Liam to a confrontation by kidnapping the little girl he saved at the beginning of the film. Meanwhile, Jean Smart from TV's "Designing Women" plays Melanie McQueen, Kayla's mother, and urges Liam to get revenge. The bloody battle that climaxes the film comes with a pivotal choice by Swain to side with Case. Read more ›
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Movie Review! - [...] - @tss5078 February 22, 2013
Being that they do so much direct-to-video stuff, it's hard to remember that both Cuba Gooding Jr., and Ray Liotta are award winning actors! Hero Wanted is one of those direct-to-video films. It follows the story of a man who tries to live the righteous life, but even the best of people have their breaking point. This was a really interesting story, with some unexpected twists and turns. It was a pretty good film that really fell under the radar. The story was great and the acting was top notch, but the way it was filmed really left a lot to be desired. The film is frequently jumping months ahead or to a flashback, without any notice or footnotes, it made parts of the film very confusing. There were also a couple of pretty big plot holes, that added to the confusion. This is by no means a classic, but the acting was terrific, the action was pretty cool, and I enjoyed it quite a bit.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars very good movie December 2, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
well this is a very good movie good screenplay good actering

i enjoy it very much
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars well worth the watching a twisting story December 3, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
this movie is very good I never would of believed the plot of this story how it twists & how it was suppose to be . all the guys are really good in it
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars cuba gooding jr February 6, 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
i love him, he is one of the best actors, love all his movies and trying make the entire collection of him,movie was fantastic
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hero Wanted September 3, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Fantastic film about friendship, mistakes and forgiveness. And the moving back and forth through the character's pasts and presents keeps you on your toes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars hero or bad guy September 2, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I thing everyone has felt like this once. The thin line beween good and bad. A lot of good acters. Its a older movie but still good
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good movie, check it out August 5, 2014
This was a great movie. It had striking imagery and quotes, the blood dripping off of the white roses, "revenge is like an airborne disease," "some things worth dying for are worth living for." I felt that sympathy was built for multiple characters which made it far more interesting that centering audience empathy around solely the protagonist. Swain (portrayed excellently as Norman Reedus) was actually my favorite character, and the one whose death impacted me the most because of his yearning to escape the town, and his decision -along with another of the perpetrators of the robbery- to fight to save the girl, Marley, in the end. The plot twists revealed in flashbacks were interesting, although confusing at the beginning and when it was hard to tell what point in time a fashback was coming from.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT MOVIE A MUST SEE!
Published 2 months ago by MICHAEL
4.0 out of 5 stars Great date night flick
I grabbed this flick because it's Norman Reedus pre The Walking Dead and Paul Sampson as a complete loose cannon. It's violent....VIOLENT and very dark but a great movie. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Lady Castus
1.0 out of 5 stars Turned It Off
I was hoping for a "decent" movie and it was OKAY for approximately the first half. Then came the typical Hollywood political attack statement. At that point and I turned it off. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Michael M. Gilbert
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor Cuba
I really liked this guy in Men of Honor, A Few Good Men, Radio, Boyz N the Hood and a few others,
but I can't remember the last good movie I've seen him in, unfortunately.
Published 22 months ago by D. GRAY
3.0 out of 5 stars HERO WANTED
Published 23 months ago by BJ PAYNE-JACKSON
5.0 out of 5 stars This movie rocks
I reviewed this film for IMDB earlier last month and I am c/p'ing my review here...

This is a movie worth watching simply because of the psychological issues dredged up... Read more
Published on October 11, 2011 by T. Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars A Hero We Need
I wasn't born a hero. Nobody ever is. Is it because of the tragedies that we never see coming? Is it because our lives lie in ruin afterward, forgotten by the world? Read more
Published on June 24, 2010 by Melissa R. Mendelson
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