Samaritan is the latest Amazon Prime exclusive movie. It stars Sylvester Stallone (Rocky) and is directed by Julius Avery, the director of the wildly underrated movie Overlord.

Now, one of my “hottest takes” when it comes to movies is that I truly believe that Stallone is a good actor, if given good material or a good director to take advantage. If you think I’m crazy, check out his performance in Cop Land, a movie where he isn’t so much a hero, but a meek, overweight sheriff that is taken advantage of by a bunch of corrupt cops. In that movie, he outacts Hollywood heavyweights like Ray Liotta (RIP), Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro. Sly has the best performance of all of them. Or, more recently, check out Creed. He was actually nominated for Best Supporting Actor at the Academy Awards, and quite frankly, was robbed. So needless to say, I was somewhat excited for this as I believe Julius Avery is a very good, up-and-coming director who might’ve been able to get yet another great performance out of Sly.

Unfortunately, he didn’t quite get there. Now, I don’t think Stallone’s performance, or this movie as a whole, is bad. But they aren’t good either. The issue is that everything in this, from the performances, to the writing, to the worldbuilding, feels undercooked. Like this actually could’ve been a pretty good miniseries.

One thing that is kinda cool about this is that it’s an original superhero IP. No Marvel, No DC. Hell, not even Image Comics (that do Invincible) or Dynamite Comics (that do The Boys). This was fully original, and that’s cool. That should be celebrated. But the thing with superhero properties is that they’re deep, filled with lore and great characters, and this movie doesn’t have those. It’s all just flashes, glimpses of these things, which ultimately makes this a frustrating watch. For example, the origin of the hero, Samaritan, and his brother, the evil Nemesis (not the most original name but I digress), is pretty cool, even if it’s been kinda told before. The fact that the history of these characters is that they’re brothers and one was the good guy and one was the bad is cool. But apart from an (admittedly cool) opening credit narration that explains it, this isn’t really built upon. It’s mentioned, sure. But it’s never really delved into, and that’s a shame.

I think Stallone is passable in this movie overall; he has some moments where he is really good, but he also mumbles his way through some scenes too. But I’d never say he is bad. The rest of the cast though… I can’t really say that. The main villain, played by Pilou Asbæk (Euron Greyjoy in Game of Thrones) is so poorly written, it wastes the talents of Asbæk, a very talented actor. His motivations are generic and weak, and the dialogue given to him is shit. He worships Nemesis, and is almost portrayed as a cult leader. But once again, nothing interesting is done with him. The other two main cast members, are Sam Cleary, played by Javon Walton (Euphoria), and his mother, played by Dasha Polanco (Orange is the New Black). I’ll start with the latter, because it’ll be quick. She sucks. It’s crazy because she is really good in OITNB. The former, Walton, is fine. He has moments of great chemistry with Stallone, but there are also moments where he should be scared, or angry, or sad, and he is always smiling. He had the emotional range of a rock.

Normally, when a movie has bad writing or bad acting, I usually find something to hold me over. Maybe there is some underrated cinematography or a banger of a score. Something. But nah, not here. Nothing gets over “mid.” One thing that was really disappointing to me about this is the PG-13 rating. Now, hear me out. I am not some gore hound, wanting to see blood and guts at every opportunity. But here’s the thing. This movie has a pretty high body count. Dudes get killed. Lots of dudes. And everytime they do, the director has to cut away because the death would be too gruesome for the PG-13 rating. An example, there is a fight scene in a warehouse. Samaritan is fighting for his life, fighting off like 30 dudes. He lifts one dude over his head and slams him spine-first onto a railing, presumably breaking his spine. Yet, the way they filmed it made it look super gentle, because God forbid we show some broken bones. Another example, this one really pissed me off. There is a scene where Samaritan gets run over by a group of young thugs he previously beat up, breaking both of his legs, plus multiple other bones. As an aside, Overlord had some really cool practical effects involving bones breaking and shit, so I was expecting that here, but nope. If they didn’t explicitly mention that he had broken bones, you wouldn’t have been able to tell. It’s hella frustrating.

This review has been pretty negative overall, but did I hate this movie? No. Is it the worst movie to come out this year? Not even close. I think this is a decent enough way to kill a couple of hours on a rainy day, but that is all it’s good for, and that’s the worst part about this, because it had so much potential.