Film Review: Snitch

Reviewed by Sam Robinson

Rated M. Starring Dwayne Johnson, Susan Sarandon

[Stars: 2/5]

Frankly, I’m very skeptical of any film starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. I’m looking at you, Tooth Fairy.

The guy has turned his fortunes from pro-wrestling to playing tough roles where sweat on the brow is a requirement. And as it seems, his role in action film Snitch is little more than that.

Snitch revolves around John Matthews (Johnson), who discovers his son Jason has been busted for receiving a package of narcotics. As it turns out, Jason was actually set up by his mate as part of a sting operation, to reduce his mate’s prison sentence. Sound unbelievable? Well, it gets more farfetched than that. Matthews manages to twist the arms of an attorney (Sarandon) to allow him to bust drug dealers himself in order to reduce his son’s prison sentence.

Thus begins this sweat-browed quest of Matthews to bust drug lords and cartels across North America. A plot like this has real action potential but this film simply falls flat. It’s far too long and slow for a gritty crime movie. And it’s filled with these confusing, unnecessary scenes – like when Matthews gets angry at his sprinkler system for no reason.

One of the big problems of this film is that it’s hard to feel any empathy for Matthews. You just assume that he’ll pull through in the end and his family will live happily ever after. And it made me question whether an arrangement like this could actually happen in real life; that an average Joe (although, this is the Rock) can reduce the sentence of a loved one by their own actions. It all seems corrupt.

Snitch is a film about righting wrongs. The father tries to make good of his son’s bad actions by catching bad guys who are even worse than his son. This got me thinking about the wrongs we commit against God and each other – we call it sin.

I think we all fall into the trap of thinking we can make up for our sin by doing good deeds, by covering the bad up with good things. But the Bible says that nothing we can do can make us right with God again. Isaiah 63:6 states that all our righteous acts are simply ‘filthy rags’ because of our sinful nature.

There’s no amount of good deeds we can do to change the sentence that sin deserves: death. But God has given us a gift in Jesus, who came to take our punishment on himself. He, the innocent, swapped places with us prisoners. Jesus served our sentence by dying on the cross and has proven that the penalty has been paid by rising to life again.

All we need to do is accept that gift and live for the one who set us free, clears our debt, and gives us eternal life. It’s brilliant news.

Snitch is a story that could have been executed much better. I’m giving it two out of five stars.

Snitch is available now on DVD, Blu-Ray and streaming on Quickflix.

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