“Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengence” burns through minds; Cage’s acting soils to ashes

Johnny Blaze crashes and burns again as his consuming desire for revenge returns in “Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengence.” Directors Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor work with Nicholas Cage (Johnny Blaze), Idris Elba (Moreau), Violante Placido (Nadya), Ciaran Hinds as (Roarke/Satan), and child actor Fergus Riordan (Danny), to make exactly one hour and 36 minutes of the badly filmed, atrociously acted, virtually plot-less sequel to a movie that was, at best, an entertainingly cheesy B movie to begin with.

In this action and adventure film, Blaze (Cage) has been hiding in Eastern Europe since parting ways with his childhood sweetheart, Roxanne (Eva Mendez) and is still fighting to deal with his curse of being the devil’s bounty hunter.  Blaze is approached by a priest (Elba) and asked to find a young boy named Danny and save him from Satan.  The priest, Moreau, offers him a chance to gain back his soul and take back the curse of the ghost rider.

The laziness of the directing is inexcusable and Nicholas Cage’s recent string of bad movies don’t even compare with his performance in this film.  At a certain point it should be permissible to revoke someone’s Oscar award.  Sometimes, his character would rant and seem half maniacal, half under the influence of one or more illicit substances and for no logical reason at all.  There was no in-between in the acting either; there was crazy Cage and the rest of the cast seemed to be lulling the audience asleep.  The dialogue didn’t help, of course.  I’m sure it’s difficult for actors to give life to such dry and cliché writing.

The shots were cluttered; the eye wasn’t sure exactly where it was supposed to be looking, and as a result, the main focus was washed out or overlooked.  The plot lacked appropriate drive and was extremely predictable.  There was no definite climax in the story and the movie stopped abruptly.

Overall, the film was a disaster.  There was no character development, no plot, weak action, and a cheesy ending that simply fell flat.  It wasn’t even the kind of bad movie you can go home and make fun of and have a good time with.  It was just plain, overall bad.  I would not recommend this film and I give it an F.

“Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengence” is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action and violence, some disturbing images and language.