Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.
USA/Hong Kong/Bulgaria/Netherlands/Canada/United Kingdom/France, 2017. Summit Entertainment, Millennium Films, Cristal Pictures, East Light Media, TIK Films, Nu Boyana Film Studios, Campbell Grobman Films, TDMP, Netherlands Film Production Incentive, London Studios, Above the Line Set Assistance & Security, Davis Films, Skydance Media. Screenplay by Tom O’Connor. Cinematography by Jules O’Loughlin. Produced by Mark Gill, Matthew O’Toole, John Thompson, Les Weldon. Music by Atli Orvarsson. Production Design by Russell De Rozario. Costume Design by Stephanie Collie. Film Editing by Jake Roberts.
Ryan Reynolds is a high stakes bodyguard entrusted with the most important people in the world, but his career is destroyed when a Japanese arms dealer dies on his watch. Now doing crummy assignments in obscurity, he gets the opportunity to reclaim his glory when he gets a call from an old friend: a Belarusian tyrant (Gary Oldman collecting a paycheque with his eyes closed) is on trial at The Hague for human rights violations and there’s only one witness who can get a conviction. The witness is a skilled hitman (Samuel L. Jackson) who is serving prison time and was being transported across Europe to testify when the Interpol escort assigned to him was taken out by Oldman’s men. One of the Interpol agents (Elodie Yung) has a past with Reynolds and asks him privately to bring Jackson in, which he agrees to do for the sake of his career. Now the man who is as good a hitman as the other is a bodyguard have to somehow get safely to the Netherlands while pursued by bad guys and hampered by their own petty squabbles. Thankfully, director Patrick Hughes is aware of the sitcom nature of this set-up and doesn’t try too hard to get anything significant out of the situation, focusing on a series of loud and expensive action sequences that are all perfectly well achieved. The film’s aims are hard to figure out, it plays like it’s for kids but features very gory violence and ripe language, which makes it feel either like a transgressive family film or a thriller for adults with no effort made at a memorable plot. Either way, it’s as fun as it is forgettable.