Bruce Willis Teams Up With Yellowstone Star Out For Revenge In Streaming Thriller

By Zack Zagranis | Updated

acts of violence
Bruce Willis in Acts of Violence (2018)

What do you get when you mix veteran action star Bruce Willis and Yellowstone alum Cole Hauser? The 2018 crime-thriller Acts of Violence. This overlooked action powerhouse that also stars the X-Men franchise’s Shawn Ashmore is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

Acts of Violence, starring Bruce Willis and Yellowstone‘s Cole Hauser, is streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

Acts of Violence follows the McGregor brothers, Deklan (Cole Hauser) and Brandon (Shawn Ashmore), both ex-military, as they try to save their younger brother’s fiance from a group of sex traffickers. Meanwhile, Detective James Avery (Bruce Willis) is pursuing the same sex traffickers while also having to deal with a corrupt police department that makes his job harder at every turn.

The brothers take matters into their own hands, arming themselves with military-grade gear and weapons and attacking the traffickers on their own turf. The film earns its R rating through plenty of violence as well as a healthy portion of sex and drugs. The only thing missing is Rock N’ Roll, but the movie does feature some indie folk music from the band Animals of Kin, which just happens to be the director’s band.

acts of violence
Cole Hauser (left) and Shawn Ashmore in Acts of Violence (2018)

That’s right, along with directing Acts of Violence, Brett Donowho also wrote and performed several of the songs that appear in the film. The movie was written by Nicolas Aaron Mezzanatto and is, to date, only the second movie he has written, the first being 2014’s SEAL Patrol.

Acts of Violence was filmed on location in Cleveland, Ohio, over the course of a single fifteen-day stretch in 2017. Despite receiving second billing after Cole Hauser, Bruce Willis was only on set for one day. That one day was still enough however to make this the fourth collaboration between Willis and Hauser following 2013’s A Good Day To Die Hard, 2003’s Tears of the Sun, and 2002’s Hart’s War.

Acts of Violence had a limited theatrical run overseas but went straight to video-on-demand in the USA. The movie grossed $386,790 during its time in the theater, with the bulk of that coming from ticket sales in the United Arab Emirates and Portugal. The movie’s budget and streaming sales are both unavailable, making it hard to determine if the movie was ultimately profitable or not.

Patrick St. Esprit and Bruce Willis in Acts of Violence (2018)

Reviews were entirely negative to the point where Acts of Violence has a rating of 0 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. This puts the movie in the company of such classics as Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol, Jaws: The Revenge, and Look Who’s Talking Now!—AKA the one with the dogs—all films that share its 0 percent rating. Viewers were slightly more enthusiastic about Acts of Violence, giving the film a 31 percent audience score.

Acts of Violence was part of a trend of largely maligned movies that ran throughout the last stretch of the now-retired Bruce Willis’s career. Along with Acts, movies like Air Strike (0 percent on RT), Hard Kill (0 percent), Midnight in the Switchgrass (8 percent), and Assassin (9 percent) are part of a group of films that Willis presumably did solely for the paycheck.

These and many more films clog up the back half of the actor’s legendary career and stand in stark contrast to Willis classics like Die Hard and Pulp Fiction.

Many fans have speculated that Bruce knew about his neurological conditions for a while before he made them public and decided to do any movie he could, while he could, in order to save up enough money for his family to live off of after he was no longer able to act.

This is even the reason why the Razzies decided to retract a special category they had created for “Worst Bruce Willis Performance” when fans pressured the group to do so after news of Willis’s deteriorating mental condition broke.

Cole Hauser and Jenna B. Kelly in Acts of Violence (2018)

Despite all of that, Acts of Violence isn’t the trainwreck that it’s made out to be. While it won’t be winning “Best Picture” anytime soon, it’s certainly not the worst movie Bruce Willis and Cole Hauser have ever made. It’s not, for example, more offensive than the later Die Hard sequels that decided to turn John McClane from the everyman schlub caught in a bad situation into a superhero action star that jumps cars into helicopters because he’s out of bullets.

If you’re looking for a fun action movie to watch while you turn your brain off after a long day at work, you could do a lot worse than Acts of Violence, streaming right now on Amazon Prime Video.