On April 23, I was lucky enough to be a part of the first public screening of, Boone: The Bounty Hunter, John Hennigan’s (Aka Johnny Mundo/John Morrison’s) new film, and it was not good.
It was amazing.
When the trailer for Boone started circling around the internet, I like many fans watched and proclaimed, “Oh, John Morrison made a parkour movie. Yeah, I’ll watch that.”
I anticipated that the movie would be a low budget film, with little story and endless gratuitous action scenes. I thought it would be a “B movie” that was fun to watch, but certainly not anything special.
Boy, was I wrong - and delighted to be so! Boone is a low budget action flick with lots of fight sequences, but behind all the parkour is a funny, thoughtful film with a surprisingly comprehensive script and a stellar cast.
The movie begins with Boone chasing down Kevin Sorbo of Hercules fame while his crew captures all of Boone’s parkour glory, including skateboarding on a trash bin, for their hit TV show aptly named “Boone: The Bounty Hunter”. Following an across town foot race Boone captures Sorbo who sadly claims “It’s just a parking ticket!” before Boone mugs into the camera “You just got Booned. You’re welcome, America!”
We soon learn that this is an average day for the Boone crew and that their television show has morphed from a criminal bounty hunting show into a celebrity parking ticket beatdown. Much to the dismay of their dwindling fan base. All of this is the set up for the main plot of the movie – to score a real bounty to save their failing tv show and to keep the crew together.
Boone and the crew head to Mexico to track down a sh*tty drug lord’s son accused of murder, but soon realize that this is much larger than a simple bounty. Faced with a town that doesn’t trust them, two insane body guards, a drug cartel and a dirty police force, Boone must learn how to put the well-being of others before himself and his tv shows success.
Hennigan is a delight to watch as he strikes a balance between a douche-y, self-obsessed TV star and a man who truly cares about what happens to his crew and the people his show has affected. There is a naiveté to Boone that Hennigan really captures. This specifically comes across with his scenes with Miguel (played by Max Weideman), a local town’s boy who views Boone as his hero. Boone may come off as a jerk, but when the chips are down he’s the jerk you want on your side.
As anticipated, the action scenes are remarkable. Hennigan does all his own parkour stunts and fights which really gives the movie an authentic feel. Additionally, all the fight scenes make sense in the plot and direction of the movie, so while super badass they don’t feel overly gratuitous. Plus, the two men who play the drug lord’s body guards, The Cardoza brothers (T.J. Storm & Lateef Crowder) are terrifying and perfect foils for a seemingly unbeatable Boone.
The supporting cast of Osric Chau & Spencer Grammer as crew members Denny and Kat keep the often-outlandish character of Boone grounded. While Denny is more of Boone’s right hand man, Kat is not afraid to call Boone out for his overflated ego, which leads to good team banter establishing them as a core unit. Even Lorenzo Lamas delivers a good performance as the town’s bar keep – complete with a dope face scar.
Honestly, the best part about watching the movie is the joy you can feel from the cast. Maybe I am biased because I got to hear Hennigan talk about the movie and the filming process, but it truly feels like a labor of love. The amount of care and attention paid to the film takes it from typical “B movie” status to a really fun, independent action film. I highly recommend for wrestling fans and non-fans alike.
“Boone: The Bounty Hunter” is out on VOD today and DVD on June 6.
Bonus drinking game rules: Survive drinking every time someone says Boone.