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Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning

2.8 out of 5 stars 160 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

John (Adkins, The Expendables 2) wakes up from a coma to discover his wife and daughter were slaughtered in a brutal home invasion. Haunted by images of the attack, he vows to kill the man responsible, Luc Deveraux (Van Damme).  While John tries to piece his reality back together, things get more complicated when he is pursued by a relentless UniSol (Arlovski).  As John gets closer to Deveraux and the rogue army of genetically enhanced warriors led by back-from-the-dead leader Andrew Scott (Lundgren), John discovers more about himself and begins to call into question everything he believed to be true.

Product Details

  • Actors: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Scott Adkins, Dolph Lundgren
  • Directors: John Hyams
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    R
    Restricted
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: January 22, 2013
  • Run Time: 113 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (160 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00A34LX9A
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,644 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Amazon Video
Three years ago, director John Hyams' Universal Soldier: Regeneration breathed new life into a thought-dead franchise and thereby made one of the best action pictures of the year. To say that I was interested in seeing this follow-up is an understatement: with a good deal of the previous one's cast and crew returning, along with the new additions of martial arts' "it" guy Scott Adkins and cult fight choreographer Larnell Stovall, this one looked like a surefire topper to its immediate prequel and another great action outing. Did the movie live up to my high expectations? ...well, at least partially. This is, without question, a great action outing with some of the better fight scenes put out this year. However, the same way that "Regeneration" was a huge departure from the style of its bouncier predecessors, so too is "Day of Reckoning" a departure from the standard action genre as we know it, with a storyline so far removed from what I was expecting that it took a bit of time for me to contemplate whether it counted for or against the movie. Overall, this one's definitely worth checking out and even buying, but depending on your expectations, it counts as the end of the "Universal Soldier" franchise.

The story: a husband and father (Adkins, Undisputed III: Redemption) is beaten half to death and sees his family murdered before him by Luc Devereaux, the maverick Unisol (Jean-Claude Van Damme). Recovering from his injuries and plagued by inexplicable hallucinations, he sets out to untangle the mystery behind the killing and exact vengeance on Devereaux.
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By E. Luna on February 11, 2013
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I enjoy cinema in all its forms. I watch foreign films, I watch surreal films, I watch action films. You name it, I'll give it a try. If a movie can keep me interested enough to watch it in one sitting, then it's doing something right. In that respect, Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning is great. It kept me interested for its entire run time, and then some. But, the thing is this, I'm a huge fan of the original Universal Soldier, and an even bigger fan of Universal Soldier: Regeneration. Both those movies are fantastic in their own respect. Sure, Universal Soldier is really campy by todays standards, but it's still a fun film. Universal Soldier: Regeneration is a truly under appreciated gem of a movie. It's one of those movies that deserves more fame that it has. I really liked the direction that US:R took, and I was hooked with the possibilities.

This is a great movie. It's moody, and the pacing is great. This movie is dripping with attitude. But, to the uninitiated, US:DoR will be confusing and jarring. That's the flaw with this movie. Somebody who just picks this up wanting to see an action flick will be alienated because it's actually pretty artsy. Those looking for a similar movie to the original one will be confused with the ultra-violence going on. US:R was easy to pick up and just watch. It had some great action scenes, pretty good characterization, and an intriguing plot. Day of Reckoning feels more like an experiment than an outright sequel. It seems to me that the director decided to see just how much he could push the envelope of the action/sci-fi genre. I respect that, and I even admire it. But, it won't make many new fans for the series.

Another problem is the unexplained events between Regeneration and this one.
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Format: Amazon Video
I was thoroughly impressed with Day of Reckoning's predecessor Regeneration which threw out the campiness of past offerings, and brought in the finely crafted directorial style of the Hyams team, and an intense explosive journey into the UNISOL world. It also introduced a significant dose of realism, and real brutal action.

Enter Day of Reckoning, which, in the overall, eclipses in my opinion Regeneration. I felt that Day of Reckoning bordered on something beyond action and good filmmaking, and achieved something greater. I felt like I had watched a work of art that explored darkness and grim unsettling brutality in a raw and rhytmic way, without the veneer of comic or glossed over effects. It has a very hypnotic feel to it that drew me in completely. The fact that Hyams was able to synthesize these very real dark and human themes into the UNISOL franchise suggests story telling and film making skill far above the norm.

The negative reviews seem to me to be one of two things: that the movie was not actually what the viewer expected it to be.... some campy piece of low budget action trash to mill away 90 minutes on your life on a rainy day (like earlier UNISOL films), or that the trailer and lead up to the film somehow misled the viewer into thinking that Van Damme and Lundgren would have roles as large as their original ones in the earlier franchise offerings. I am thinking that such criticisms, if that's all they are, indicate a pretty good movie at the core here.

HYams, Van Damme Adkins, and Co., have done something very different. They made a movie with a vision of human darkness like that explored in Apocalypse Now and movies and books (Conrad, etc... ) like it.
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