(WARNING: This review may contain some spoilers.)
If you had to ask me what one of my personal favorite movies of all time would be, one of them would most likely be “Deadpool,” starring Ryan Reynolds. I found that almost every minute of that movie was incredibly entertaining and somewhat humorous for me, and I’m excited for the sequel. With Reynold’s performance, I thought that this man must be hilarious. That’s probably what made me want to go see his new movie with Samuel L. Jackson, “The Hitman’s Bodyguard.”
However, I have to share a sad truth. That is, that this movie tries to take what “Deadpool” did and turn it into an even more fast-paced, f-bomb riddled fusion of action and comedy. And it did not work at all.
“The Hitman’s Bodyguard” centers around Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds), a former professional bodyguard turned low rate protector, and Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson), a former legendary hitman now in INTERPOL custody. In the movie, the former dictator of Belarus is on trial at the Hague for human rights violations. Out of options, Bryce’s former love interest and INTERPOL agent Amelia Roussel has hired him to get Kincaid to the Hague to testify. However, the two are rivals and an “odd couple” for most of the movie, ranting and screeching at each other in a supposedly comedic fashion. But these arguments do not cover up the movie’s massive flaws.
For starters, there are loads and loads of CGI and poor sequencing. Helicopters look fake, the chase scenes and fights look constantly cheesy, loaded with shaky cam, unnecessary animated explosions that even make Michael Bay blush, and loads upon loads of action movie clichés. There seems to be a certain cheesiness to the film, but not in an intentional way. It’s trying too hard to be what “Deadpool” and movies like “Hot Fuzz” are, a blend of action and comedy. However, the movie lacks the skill to blend the two together. Either the comedy and action are kept completely separate, or forcibly smashed into each other. Overall, it creates a lot of cringe-worthy moments trying to be fun.
As stated, the comedy seems incredibly forced at times. The main laughs come from the two protagonists yelling and screaming at each other. This is incredibly rough, as the loudness of the characters, quantity of f-bombs and the frequency of the arguments are all about five times higher than they need to be. Overall, the characters’ ranting seems to be the source of most of the movie’s humor.
Throughout the movie, there are several scenes which seem either incredibly tone-deaf or offensive. For example, there is a point in the movie where a truck bomb nearly goes into a group of protestors outside the Hague. If you don’t understand why this is offensive, just look to the international news.
Aside from that, the movie seems to be incredibly dark at times and even goes as far as to actually portray these moments for the viewer, such as when we witness two people getting executed early on in the movie. This doesn’t even feel necessary, as events like these could be described via dialogue from the narrator, one of the witnesses in the case. Instead, we are forced to sit through this shocking and disturbing moment.
There are also scenes where Kincaid’s wife, Sonia, is downright abusive to her cellmate in INTERPOL custody, and incredibly crude to guards and wardens. I would want to think that the movie is trying to be a dark comedy, but it’s just dark. There’s nothing to laugh about.
Overall, the movie seemed to be a mess. It tried all it could be to live up to the expectations of those first trailer, but fell incredibly short, resulting in a rating of a 37% on Rotten Tomatoes and a 7/10 on IMDb. Its use of cheap moments, dry humor, and insensitivity made what could have been a legendary comedy concept and turned it into 2 hours of frustration and regret. I personally give it a 3/10 for nearly ruining my night, so don’t waste your time or your money. Go see the new IT or something.
John Boughey, Staff Reporter