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Grit, Grins, and Guns: Orlando Bloom's Kentucky Crusade in 'Red Right Hand' (2024 Movie Review

Cash is trying to live an honest and quiet life, but when Big Cat forces him back into her services, he proves capable of anything to protect the town and the only family he has left.

Ah, Red Right Hand, a movie that promises to whisk us away to a world where Orlando Bloom trades his elf ears and pirate hat for, I assume, a more mundane set of problems in the gritty underbelly of, wait for it... Campbellsburg, Kentucky. Yes, folks, we've come a long way from Middle-earth and the high seas, and it appears Mr. Bloom is on a quest to redefine the term "action hero" without the need for a mystical bow or a cursed compass. And let's not forget Andie MacDowell and Garret Dillahunt, who seem to have embarked on this journey with him, possibly in search of the same career renaissance or maybe just a decent paycheck.

The plot, oh, the plot! It's as deliciously clichéd as you might hope for: our protagonist, Cash (played by Bloom, in case the bulging biceps hadn't given it away), is trying to lead a life as quiet as the town's library on a Monday morning. But, alas, the villainous Big Cat, who I can only assume is neither big nor a cat, drags him back into the fray. And what does our hero do? He proves he's "capable of anything" to protect his town and his makeshift family, which, judging by action movie standards, probably means a lot of glaring, punching, and the occasional heartfelt monologue.

Now, let me tell you what tickled my fancy: seeing Orlando Bloom flexing muscles I didn't know existed outside of CGI enhancements was a sight to behold. The man has clearly not been skipping leg day, arm day, or any day for that matter. And the final showdown? Oh, it's as if the director decided realism was the way to go, with a sprinkle of "let's make sure the audience feels every punch and bullet." For that, I tip my hat.

However, not all that glitters is gold, my friends. The entire cast seems to have attended the "How to Look Tough in Five Easy Steps" workshop, and the result is a smorgasbord of furrowed brows and clenched jaws. It's as if someone said, "Remember, if you're not trying hard to look tough, are you even acting?" And with such a stellar lineup, I expected a smidge more than the cinematic equivalent of a testosterone-laden staring contest.

A fun tidbit for you location scouts out there: Campbellsburg, Kentucky, plays a starring role, with the local Baptist Church and jail making cameos that are sure to be the talk of the town. Who knew Kentucky was Hollywood's go-to for that authentic "small-town with big secrets" vibe?

So, where does Red Right Hand land on the grand scale of cinematic achievements? I'm giving it a hearty 6.9/10. It's not quite the Oscar bait one might hope for, but it's certainly an entertaining way to spend a couple of hours, especially if you're into biceps, brooding, and Bloom.

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