200 words about Belly of the Beast
A slide to remember
Steven Seagal is a man with an extremely wide body of work. He has played everything from a CIA operative fighting Italian mob bosses to a Yale archeologist fighting Chinese mob bosses. If you think any of his movies are good, you are someone’s uncle. That said, one is good: 2003’s Belly of the Beast, directed by Hong Kong action legend Tony Ching Siu-Tung (Duel to the Death). It opens with an act of aggression against its star. He is shown infiltrating a mansion by diving onto a polished floor and gliding smoothly to the other end of the room, like a bowling ball or a tactical porpoise. Someone who truly hated Seagal must have convinced him this looked cool. The fights are directed to the hilt: Whenever Seagal’s knuckles brush someone, the man is thrown by wire into a distant pile of vegetables or a wall of lumber. In one scene, Seagal lies flat on his back on a railroad handcar and fires a pistol while rolling slowly forward, shooting dozens of goons from unlikely angles. That’s Belly of the Beast: an amusement ride built to carry its star through every scene, even when he refuses to stand up.