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Running Time: 
220 minutes

Arnold Schwarzenegger has slowly been getting back into Hollywood after leaving his governor of California position in 2011. Since then he’s been in a handful of lackluster action movies that act as a simple novelty signifying that Arnold “is back” more than anything else. While Sabotage is slightly better than anything he’s been in post political career, it still is nowhere near the level of enjoyment of his past films.

Breacher (Schwarzenegger) is the leader of an elite group of undercover DEA operatives whose mission is to infiltrate drug cartels and take them down from the inside. They’re good at what they do, but after $10 million in drug money goes missing after one such bust they are put under investigation and taken out of the field. When six months goes by and nothing turns up they’re returned to active duty, only to have their joy is short lived. Soon the squad members are gruesomely picked off, one by one. Is one of the drug cartels exacting revenge, or is there a traitor among the group?

Sabotage follows a group of testosterone-filled macho men (and one woman) taken straight out of a Call of Duty game. They’re bearded, tattooed beasts living on the edge who shoot first and ask questions later. They’re a hard group of people to like, regardless of the fact that $10 million went missing. But they’re good at what they do so they’re basically given free reign over their jobs.

As the leader, Schwarzenegger isn’t all that much different. He has some demons from the past that he’s hiding, but the film only goes into detail about it at the very beginning and end. Turns out his family was kidnapped and tortured by the cartel and he’s a broken man out for revenge. The film doesn’t focus on it at all while the group attempt to figure out who’s killing them one by one so by the time it does address this plot point it comes out of left field. By that time Breacher has already done so much destruction that you don’t care about the reason why.

Another thing about Sabotage is that Arnold is definitely showing his age. At 66 he clearly isn’t as versatile and physical as he once was. Yes, for a man his age he’s still got it, but it’s nowhere near the level necessary for this kind of film. It’s lacking as an action film, and the story is nowhere near good enough to carry it on its own.

Sabotage has fleeting moments of enjoyment but they’re few and far between. Schwarzenegger is no longer the crowd pleaser he used to be, and his films are going to need something more than just mediocre action in order to get by.

Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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