26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: In Hell (DVD)
In Hell is one of the best JCVD movies from his recent direct to video offerings. In the film, he plays Kyle LeBlanc, a French-American man living and working in Russia with his American wife, who soon gets brutally murdered. Kyle is then sent to a Russian prison after he murders the man who killed his wife. Of course, this prison is no cakewalk...actually it makes Oswald State Prison from the HBO show "Oz" literally look like Disney World. The warden and guards are all corrupt and the prisoners who have money get all the perks. The warden also sets up a human cockfighting arena on the prison grounds where he has two prisoners fight (most of the time fight to the death) and he and his friends take bets on the winners. Of course, JCVD sets out to make his way through this corrupt system, help his new prison friends, and get revenge for his wife's death.
The film is very dark, brutal, and bloody, but it is beautifully filmed. There is one scene in particular when Kyle is thrown in "the hole" for misbehaving. In that scene, after Kyle loses hope and tries to hang himself, a moth flies down from the window/rafters above him and the camera beautifully follows it down as it flutters toward Kyle, and then it lands on the handle of the spoon that is in his untouched bowl of gruel, as if to say, "Eat. Get stronger, and you will be able to free yourself from this place." I know it sounds really corny, but it is really a lovely scene and not something that you typically see in JCVD films.
The DVD transfer is awesome. Picture and sound quality are good and you get widescreen and fullscreen to choose from.
Definitely a movie to see, whether you like Van Damme or not. It's a movie for anyone who has ever lost anyone they loved or had their life inexplicably turned upside down and had to fight to get things right.