Directed By: Patrick Hughes
Written By: Tom O’Connor
Cinematography By: Jules O’Loughlin
Editor: Jake Roberts
Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, Ryan Reynolds, Salma Hayek, Gary Oldman, Elodie Yung, Joaquim De Almeida Richard E. Grant
With his reputation in tatters after a painfully unsuccessful delivery of a distinguished Japanese client, former triple-A executive protection agent, Michael Bryce, two long years after the disgraceful incident, is now reduced to a mere second-class bodyguard for hire. Under those circumstances, Bryce would do anything to prove his worth once again, and as a result, it won’t be long before he accepts an offer from Interpol to escort the renowned international assassin Darius Kincaid from Manchester to the Hague. The task seems simple: Bryce only needs to transport the contract killer from point A to point B, nevertheless, Kincaid, as the only one with the guts and enough hard evidence to testify against a tyrannical Belarusian dictator, is an obvious target, while the trip to the Netherlands is long and hazardous. Without a doubt, this a race against the clock as the mismatched duo will have to put aside their grudges, in a non-stop concerto for bullets.
To tell you the truth this is low quality entertainment. As the film feeds into every cliche and action cliche. What works is that the film knows this and more feeds you energy, impressive action and comedy. So much and so fast you don’t really have time to think about any of that. This is a buddy comedy taken from being cops to adversaries who learn to respect one another. It’s infectous as the stars and everyone is having fun making this film and wants the audience to see and feel the same way. Samuel l. Jackson gets to be a bad ass on screen as well as use the term Mother f**ker as much as he can onscreen in the unique way that he does. That he seem to make it his own personal Poetry.
The film offers some surprises in between the predictability.
The movie doesn’t really offer anything new. It’s more like something you watch on cable or watch and remember maybe some bits and pieces or that you like the actors but that is about it. It doesn’t stay with you long.
It’s like fast food gives you a rush of energy but isn’t necessarily all that great for you or anyone. As this feels more like a movie that would come out in January the notorious down period for studios releasing movies. Where the films are usually disappointing and only put out to make a quick dollar. Though when it comes to this film what helps sell it is the team-up of two well known stars who can be sarcastic and the fact it is such a late summer oddity.
The film knows exactly what it is and what type of film it is like SNAKES ON A PLANE. It stays firmly tongue in cheek throughout. Nothing is all that serious. Though it stays fun.
Ryan Reynolds plays his usual type of wise cracking dangerous yet strangely professional. That is his welcome presence and usually helps elevate subpar films to passable. As he can play it straight but makes him seem like a dime a dozen. Though when he is goofy and adds comedic timing it usually helps the films he is in.
Salma Hayek must have only worked a few days. As her character is important but really is used in two locations. A jail and a bar. Though her presence hangs heavy. As she is a goal for Samuel L. Jackson’s character. Bough at least she gets an action sequence to herself. While I enjoyed her in the film. Her character seems like a more violent riff in Sofia Vegara’s usual type of characters.
Gary Oldman as the villain has played this type it’s almost as if his AIR FORCE ONE character lived and grew in power to become this villain. Who stays strictly as evil as the script allows him to. There is no memorable over the top performance unfortunately he seems like most of the cast. Here more for a paycheck. Though st least the stars seem to be having fun.
The film is over the top in the most fun and ridiculous ways. The film doesn’t care about critics. As it is more made for audiences and only to entertain. It feels rushed and thrown together more than anything like quite a few Ryan Reynolds films of the past SELF/LESS and CRIMINAL. That make as much sense or feel like straight to DVD movies of the 90’s only here with bigger stars and budgets. As well as better film making, but made to be the cinematic equivalent of junk food.
The actors have great chemistry and if I was rating the film solely on that this film would be much higher rated. Unfortunately I must rate it hard in the whole of itself. Which is where I wish the film could have followed it’s Leads in the term of quality.
The film fits into the universe of films like the movie RED. Where almost all the main characters are killers and many are killed and we aren’t supposed to care. Except when there are in innocents exterminated. Which I guess would match the tone of the director’s previous film THE EXPENDABLES 3
Just as they try to make Jackson’s character more likeable and moral by only killing guilty bad guys. Even though he is a hitman. Go see at your won risk, but expect a fun popcorn flick none the less.