We’ve seen films like Welcome to Acapulco before with the hapless loser gets caught up over his head but few have been as painfully obnoxious as this one.
The problem with this film is it becomes a grating and grueling experience just 20 minutes in. If there were awards for try-hards, Welcome to Acapulco would have 2019 locked down with no threat of competition.
Everything about the film is so needlessly over the top from the geeky, nerdy main character ‘pausing’ the film every 90 seconds to offer some witty banter, the goofy characters and lousy acting. Maybe the most annoying aspect of the film is it didn’t have to be so lousy. The filmmakers just bet on its worst aspects and doubled down instead of simply letting the story play out naturally.
Matt (Michael Kingsbaker) is a video game designer prepping for a big game reveal. After a run-in with his buddy Tony (Bradley Gregg), Matt finds himself in Acapulco with various people after him for the mysterious package in his possession.
Matt quickly wears out his usefulness by ‘pausing’ the film seemingly ever 90 seconds to offer some inane commentary every few minutes. That insight into Matt’s thoughts is one of the film’s biggest hindrances and it becomes an overdone storytelling crutch.
It gets worse when Matt is helped by CIA agent Adriana (Ana Serradilla) as he starts creepily referring to her as his girlfriend and is threatened by every male they encounter. Again, the cornball falling for the kick-tail fighter isn’t some revelatory premise, but this film makes Matt come off like an obsessed psycho.
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It almost comes across like screenwriter Garry Charles doesn’t trust the script and seeks to distract the audience from paying close attention to anything. Whenever a new character is introduced, Matt has to break down that he has no idea who this person is and questions if they’re in love with Adriana.
To play into Matt’s profession, Director Guillermo Ivan throws in some random video game animations. In small doses these could have worked, but like everything else in Welcome to Acapulco, it becomes exhausting and overdone. Between Matt’s tiring narration, the video game style character bio introductions and spastic editing it’s all too much.
Ivan fares better with the action sequences than with the comedy. It’s too bad Ivan didn’t lean more to the action as the film probably would have been a lot more bearable.
I’d say Michael Madsen, William Baldwin and Paul Sorvino are slumming by showing up in this film, but they’ve never been particularly picky about roles they accept. Let’s hope the paycheck was good. Something with this production needed to be.
Welcome to Acapulco really could have been a far more entertaining film, but the irritating narration quickly becomes annoying and there’s little reason to hope it gets better. This one is basically game over from the start.
Rating: 2 out of 10
Photo Credit: Entertainment One