One of the best things about Netflix is their willingness to welcome various films from across the globe into their home. With Xtreme (or the Spanish title Xtremo), Netflix paved the way for a Spanish action movie set in Barcelona.
For most mainstream audiences, all the talent involved with Xtreme may not be familiar but they absolutely conveyed the ambition on the screen.
Whether viewers want gunfights, samurai sword battles, or hand-to-hand warfare, this movie offers quite the buffet of action choices.
But is Xtreme a worthy action movie for Netflix viewing? Here is our review of Xtremo.
The film centers on Maximo (Teo García), a hitman that was born and raised as a stepson to a crime boss. As the film begins, Maximo’s stepbrother Lucero (Óscar Jaenada) sabotages a meeting with his father’s ally during a money exchange.
Without knowing about his brother’s betrayal, Maximo defends Lucero and kills everyone in the room by his side.
Shortly after, Maximo departs from the disastrous meet-and-greet, believing he is free to go on vacation. That ended when the people he works for ambushed his home. Even worse, his brother sent there them.
As tough as Maximo is, the situation becomes overwhelming. Lucero’s men kill Maximo’s family and leave him there to burn.
But as the trailer shows, he survived. And well, anyone who has ever seen a John Wick movie can guess what happens next.
To start off, this film is a mess. That said, it’s a mess that works way better than it should.
For one, Xtreme feels like a collection of good ideas from other films thrown into a stew and set to boil. The biggest ingredient being Gladiator. No, there are no gladiator fights in this film and Lisa Gerrard does not sing, creating a spiritual atmosphere through the violence.
But this is a John Wick film with the story structure of Gladiator. The principal character is the one more favored by the king. The brother is jealous. He kills the dad, takes the crown, and leaves the principal character for dead.
Then the hero aims for revenge, “in this life or the next.”
Even the protagonists of both movies share almost the same name — Maximo and Maximus. The movie itself acknowledges the similar names of both characters. However, it feels like it’s doing so in a love letter fashion.
Xtreme also feels like a B-grade action movie ripped from the 80s or 90s. The male lead gawks at the only female lead in the film, during questionable times. The bad guys are over-the-top and ripped with testosterone.
The hero is reckless to a point that it gets innocent people killed around him. The only thing missing is a gratuitous sex scene with random patches of nudity for absolutely no reason.
And this does not mean the movie is bad. In fact, surprisingly, it all works better than it should because everyone involved — from the cast to the writers and crew — knew exactly what kind of movie they were making.
Teo García will also have audiences magnified throughout the film. Much like Bruce Willis, even though he is tough looking, he is such an unlikely presence for this kind of role.
During the film, one character describes Garcia’s character Maximo as being like “Bruce Lee and John Wayne,” when actually he looks like someone ripped a character from Sons of Anarchy and taught them Kung Fu.
There is one downside in choosing a performer like Garcia. Because he is so built, it makes it harder to have extremely stylized martial arts fights.
Nevertheless, the action scenes with Garcia are brutal and absolutely tense. If Netflix streamers are looking for flinch-worthy stabbings and bone-crunching battles, there is plenty here on the menu.
But as stated, keep expectations in check. This is an immensely derivative film with very little new content to offer story wise for the genre. The action is fun and Teo Garcia is a welcome fresh face to the action world.
Xtreme is just not aiming to do anything original and if viewers accept that, then it should be a fun ride.
Should you stream Xtreme (Xtremo) on Netflix?
Xtreme is a cheesy throwback action movie that only wants the viewer to have a good time.
It’s ridiculous, over-the-top, and not original by any means. But it’s also very self-aware of all this and knows what kind of movie it wants to be.
Netflix viewers who are looking for a guilty pleasure throwback can do no wrong with this crazy action movie from Spain.
Xtreme is now streaming on Netflix.