The Hitman’s Bodyguard Review: Wasted Potential in this Late Summer Action Fest

Summer is coming to an end, and since August doesn’t really bring anything noteworthy, something like the latest film The Hitman’s Bodyguard has a chance to be somewhat memorable. But with a premise like this, did you expect them to get along?

Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds) was one of the highest protection agents until one of his clients was killed. He’s called upon to guard the life of his mortal enemy, Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson), one of the world’s most notorious hitmen. During their journey from England to The Hague, they encountered some crazy antics to get across so Darius must testify against a word criminal.

Not that I was expecting anything good out of The Hitman’s Bodyguard, but I was hoping it was going to end up as a fun romp to end the summer. Though director Patrick Hughes isn’t the best choice to do another action movie because his last film The Expendables 3 was a massive letdown (because of its tainted down PG-13 rating), it’s pretty clear it still has that power. But with both Nick Fury and Deadpool in an action comedy, maybe that could be at least tolerable? Action comedies are some of my go-to’s nowadays. This should be said because there’s very little to recommend in a film doesn’t hit all its points.

Anytime there’s a film that stars either Reynolds or Jackson, you automatically know the type of character they’ll play. The both of them have been funny in other movies before. Did they together make this work? Soft no. Reynolds is basically himself with a few exceptions; Jackson is the tough guy who will say “motherf—er” in every scene he’s in. At this point, it’s part of his contract. There are moments where the chemistry is sometimes there, but other times it didn’t appear. Half of the time is them having many moments of banter at each other as expected. Both of them play themselves, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But if I want to see Reynolds be a lot more hilarious, I’ll wait for Deadpool 2, thank you very much.

Nearly all of the action sequences weren’t that bad to look at. Some of them were well-filmed and looked like it was practical at times minus some notable green screen. There was one chase through Amsterdam that wasn’t that bad. Oddly enough, the score was actually really good even though it’s a shame that it’s being used in a movie like this.

Besides those positives, this wasn’t good for a long time. The story itself is just tired as predictable as it sounds. Nothing was really too original for this. This is one of those road trip movies where a duo of some kind needs to get from point A to point B in a matter of time. It’s also a long movie clocking in at almost two hours long and it should’ve been something like 98-minutes at most.

How many times did I laugh? I think I only laughed once throughout the entire movie. Honestly, the rest of the movie didn’t do a great job at executing these jokes. Just the writing overall is a mess as it couldn’t comprehend both the laughs and the action together making the tone very inconsistent. But who am I to say that? Everybody in my theater was howling at almost everything.

Both Oldman and Salma Hayek are pretty much wasted. Oldman’s the film’s villain is completely useless. And Hayek is Darius’s wife who’s in prison, but her screen time is very limited.

It felt like a more dumbed down Knight & Day (the passable Tom Cruise/ Cameron Diaz vehicle) to where it’s settled on ridiculous action and a plot that doesn’t go anywhere coming together with a mediocre script. This might’ve worked in the 90s where it was the decade for buddy movies but it came out in 2017. Bad timing. They also wasted the opportunity to get a jab at The Bodyguard because they spoofed it in the post and the first trailer played I Will Always Love You, and they did nothing. How pointless is that for the marketing?

This was becoming unwatchable for a long time, and once that laugh hits, it still wasn’t good but it’s hard to tell if there was effort thrown in this. Some people will have fun with this after walking out. For me, it was kind of trash. Even with two talented people in this, it doesn’t make up for a lame movie to come out in at the of the season.

The Hitman’s Bodyguard may be fun and enjoyable for some, but this is just a disposable action comedy with little to few laughs.

Grade: C-

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