Bodybuilder Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) convinces his muscle-headed buddies Adrian (Anthony Mackie) and Paul (Dwayne Johnson) to join him in a scheme to kidnap and extort money from a shady businessman (Tony Shalhoub), but things go awry and the trio must figure out how to stay alive and one step ahead of the authorities and various criminal elements.
This is the latest salvo in the full-scale assault from Johnson, who is apparently locked in an epic battle with Bruce Willis to see which one of them can take over the multiplex landscape in 2013. Pain & Gain marks a departure of sorts for director Michael Bay (The Transformers franchise, Armageddon), who’s not known for such small-time hijinks. Now in theaters. (R) Not screened in time for review
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