Stunt brothers James and Chris Mark make A movie
Years ago I reviewed a movie called Die Fighting which gave off very similar vibes to what is going on here with Kill Order. Both films are put together by martial artists and on-screen fighters with incredible talents to display to the world. Both feature casts made largely of non-actors who struggle to convey a presence beyond home video levels of sophistication. Both feature narratives that exist for little more than to string together fight sequences where the filmmakers can truly display their talents. And in that regard, both kind of succeed in displaying a killer calling card for on-screen martial arts talent.
Star Chris Mark and fellow stunt man and brother James Mark (who directs here) succeed in a most tangible way with Kill Order in one crucial sense: I had never heard of them before, and now I have.
It’s not exactly a complete film or one that I’d recommend, but Kill Order got my attention. Clocking in at 77 minutes, Kill Order still comes close to overstaying its welcome. There’s a bit of a horror/sci-fi hook to the story with Chris Mark playing David, a high school student who is very troubled by terrifying visions. He’s attacked at his school, goes on the lamb with a friend, and fights a bunch of nameless/faceless foot soldiers, occasionally revealing some sort of hidden and disturbing power within himself that appears to make him into an unstoppable badass. This will be explained, an evil corporation will be at the heart of it all, and it’ll ultimately lead to a knock-down, drag-out third act fight that almost makes it worth a watch.
Fans of extremely indie action and fight films will get a kick out of Kill Order as I did. General audiences will find little to enjoy as the story, script, and performances all take a major back seat to the fight choreography and execution of tight action set pieces. James and Chris Mark are officially on my radar and I’m curious to see where this calling card and highlight reel can take them in their careers. Chris is certainly handsome and kicks people’s asses with grace and fluidity. James captures the fights in exactly the way you hope for: with clarity and excitement. Hopefully Hollywood will take notice of these guys and take them from the general stunt community and give them shots at more action choreography, second unit work, or stunt coordination. There’s little to compel me to be interested in a continuation of Kill Order’s specific storyline, but much to pique my interest in these gentlemens’ future careers.
And I’m Out.
Kill Order is available on VOD, Digital HD, and DVD on Feb. 6th from RLJE Films.