Ladies and Gentlemen, you may turn off your brains now.
How to develop the plot of a brainless Hollywood action flick, in 11 easy steps:
Develop some guilt and other emotion to be easily overcome later in the film, via a few heart-to-heart chats between colleagues. Demote Farrell for his cockiness in the first scene, but consign his colleague to the police bin of history.
Introduce Samuel L. Jackson as the older, wiser counterpart to the young and impetuous Farrell.
Introduce the bad guy at LAX.
Build up to Jackson inviting Farrell back to the SWAT team.
Get the SWAT team trained up with a good ‘ol sequence of montage-style scenes, followed by a test, and then a booze-up and celebration.
Up the pace of the story be re-introducing the baddie in a jail-break scene, reinforcing how bad he is by listing his crimes. Have a bit of trouble transporting him around.
Engage in the only original twist in the story (which I won’t reveal).
Crawl around in some sewers for a while in a game of cat and mouse.
Reveal the ridiculous escape route the bad guy’s rescuers have arranged for him, except that sadly:
The good guys win.
This film is pure entertainment, as long as you don’t get too irritated by the gung-ho nature of the presentation (or for that matter, the blatant Fedex product placement). If you feel like an action film with a bit more intelligence, see another film of Jackson’s instead: The Negotiator, which has a lot of similar themes.