Staring Ryan Reynolds. Samuel L. Jackson,
Gary Oldman, Salma Hayek, Élodie Yung,
Joaquim de Almeida and Richard E. Grant
Written by Tom O'Connor
Directed by Patrick Hughes
Reviewed by Paul & Patrick Gibbs
Out of Four
We don't subscribe to the view that comedy is comedy and drama is drama and never the twain shall meet. A deft tonal mix can frequently be more satisfying than a movie that tries to invoke only one kind of emotional response for its entire running time. That said, there are certain things that, by their very nature, undercut the fun of an escapist action comedy, and depiction of war crimes is one of them. It's hard to see images of mass executions/graves and a man's wife and child gunned down in front of him and then quickly transition into having a goofy laugh at the silly antics of our leads. To put it another way, you're either making Beverly Hill Cop II or Schindler's List, not both at the same time.
|Reynolds and Jackon are ready for generic, action you've seen|
done many times before, (and better) in The Hitman's Bodyguard
(Image Courtest Summit Entertainment)
Michael Bryce (Reynolds), a formerly highly rated special protection agent, is an a major slump. The high profile client he was hired to protect is killed on his watch, and the resulting anger and downward spiral ended his relationship with Ameila Roussel (Élodie Yung of Netflix's Daredevil), a beautiful Interpol Agent. But when Amelia is assigned to get Darius Kincaid Jjackson) an international assassin to teh Hague safely so he can testify against a ruthless European dictator (Gary Oldman), her mission becomes compromised, and the only person she can trust to protect and transport Kincaid is her old flame. Bryce and Kincaid are like Felix Unger and Oscar Madison, but with guns, and their distaste for each other is matched only by their distrust, and their journey from point is fraught not only with peril, but endless bickering.
|Deadpool is told by Nick Fury that he will never be|
be one of The Avengers.
Image Courtesy Summit Entertainment
|Samuel L. Jakson reacts to the salary figure Summit Entertainment |
is willing to pay him just to say "motherf***er" a bunch of times
(Image Courtesy Summit Entertainment
The musical score tracks feel like they've largely been chosen at random, and cinematographer Jules O'Loughlin makes some choices with lenses and filter that are frankly just puzzling. All of this comes back, of course, to the director, Patrick Hughes, who still has to point to The Expendables 3 as his best film (he did a much better job with the action in that film. There is literally only one memorable fights sequence here, a brawl between Reynolds and a Russian thug, and that's really only because the two really throw themselves into it. Reynolds can really sell a Bourne/Bond fight style fight, as we saw in Safe House.).
There was plenty of potential here for something really fun and (if not exactly original) different from the rest of the summer fare we've seen this year, and it should have been an easy slam dunk. As it stands, the only thing noteworthy about The Hitman's Bodyguard is the fact that it is one of the most egregious examples of Hollywood's "goof enough" mentality in a summer that has been brimming over with them, and the only thing it will be remembered for is its gimmicky ad campaign.
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