First Look: Death Race

Lets make one thing perfectly clear. There are two Paul Andersons" Paul Thomas Anderson and Paul W.S. Anderson. One is a great director who created one of the best films of the year (There Will Be Blood) and what people are calling a cinematic masterpiece, and the other is a hack director who somehow found his place directing video game adaptations. The only reason he's still in the business is because he attaches himself with film properties with built in fanbases. The studios dont care about quality, they care about quantity (tickets that is). And sadly, the types of films he makes will sell tickets by the title alone.

WS's filmography includes Mortal Kombat, Soldier, the Resident Evil films, AVP, and now the upcoming reamke of the 1975 cult classic Death Race 2000. The remake which is titled Death Race, stars Jason Statham (shown above) in a "post-industrial wasteland of tomorrow, with the world's most brutal sporting event as its backdrop." Click on the image to enlarge.

The official plot synopsis continues:

A penitentiary full of felons has inspired the jailers to create a grisly pastime ripe for lucrative kickbacks.  Now, adrenalized inmates, a global audience hungry for televised violence and a spectacular arena come together to form the Death Race.

Three-time speedway champion Jensen Ames (Statham) is an expert at survival in the harsh landscape that has become our country.  Just as he thinks he has turned his life around, the ex-con is framed for a gruesome murder he didn't commit.  Forced to don the mask of the mythical driver Frankenstein-a crowd favorite who seems impossible to kill-Ames is given an easy choice by Terminal Island's warden (Joan Allen): suit up or rot away in a cell.

His face hidden by a metallic mask, one convict will be put through an insane three-day challenge.  Ames must survive a gauntlet of the most vicious criminals in the country's toughest prison to claim the prize of freedom.  Driving a monster car outfitted with machine guns, flamethrowers and grenade launchers, one desperate man will destroy anything in his path to win the most twisted spectator sport on Earth.

Death Race hits theaters on September 26th, 2008.