These days, Vin Diesel can flog a movie on his tod. No surprise then, that after more than two years collecting dust, Knockaround Guys pops up to fuel the public's desire for all things Diesel. If anything, the surprise is that it bypassed cinemas to make its bow on DVD. Especially when you consider the rest of the cast: Dennis Hopper, John Malkovich, Barry Pepper, Seth Green - that's some shelf-filler.
Pepper takes the lead, the good-hearted son of a crimelord (Hopper, reliable as ever) who begs his dad for one last crack at making it in the Mob. He gets his chance, but coke-addled flyboy Green cocks it up, forcing Diesel to help them retrieve half a million dollars from the claws of some corrupt local coppers. His method? Cracking skulls.
So it's by-the-numbers stuff, with scripter/helmers Brian Koppelman and David Levien letting their big guns blaze their usual trails: Diesel growls, Hopper scowls, Mobster Malkovich tries another wonky accent, Green does funny and Pepper looks serious. A tad more savvy and this might have been an intriguing tale of gangster angst. Instead, it's just a bit of serviceable bang for your buck.