Killer Elite(released Sept/11)stars,among others,Jason Statham as Danny Bryce,Clive Owen as Spike Logan,Yvonne Strahovski as Anne Frazier and Robert De Niro as Hunter.This film is certainly a wild ride and it has its characters jumping back and forth between the Arabian desert and London,England on a regular basis.It also has a LOT of PLOT.They say the devil is in the details,and if you can hang on for the ride,in the end it will be worth it.
The story finds Statham as an elite assassin who comes out of retirement in order to rescue his ex partner DeNiro,who is being held by an Arabian Sheik.In exchange for his ex partners freedom,he wants Statham to kill the three ex British SAS soldiers who killed his three sons.Statham agrees and he starts down a long,long path of revenge for the Sheik.Statham gets his contact info from a travel agent,who in turn gets his from a covert government agent.
Statham assembles a small group together to tackle each job.They either work in tandem or separately.But all hits must have proof on film of their confessions and subsequent death.Each hit takes a lot of prep time and one by one they reach their third victim.By that time a group of ex SAS men,led by Owen,has been hot on their trail and Owen has already done one on one battle with Statham.Owen's group is called the Feathermen,and he reports directly to a hush hush group of individuals high up in government circles.As the heat rises the group start gets cold feet and eventually Owen finds himself alone and rogue.
Statham finishes the last man and he reports to the Sheik and it all ends.He heads back home to his girlfriend and De Niro is free and he also heads homeward.All is well until one night Statham receives a call saying the job isn't finished.It seems there's one more to go;a man who is writing a book,which contains the name of the real killer of one of the Sheiks sons.To put the point home the caller tells him to check his girlfriend,if he has any doubts.He goes upstairs to find her quite well,lying in bed,but quickly retrieves an unspent bullet from behind her head,on the pillow.Realizing he has to go this alone,he takes her with him to Paris.He contacts DeNiro who comes back to watch his girlfriend for him,though DeNiro pleas to go along with him.
Statham attends a book signing of the author,who he must off.However it is all a clever trap to get Statham,by Owen.Statham gets his man and evidence and flees,but is eventually caught.Statham agrees to tell Owen exactly what has been happening in exchange for his freedom.But in walks the secretive government man who has been dishing intel to Statham's contact/travel agent.He tells them the government wants the oil rich land the Sheik owns and that they were both set up from the start.A fight ensues with the G-man going down and Statham fleeing.
Next we have Statham and DeNiro back in Arabia,with Statham about to walk in to hand over the evidence.Something is amiss though,as Owen has gone in ahead and handed it over,ahead of Statham's arrival.Not only that but Owen has killed the Sheik and Owen has had to flee for his life.Statham and DeNiro take care of the Sheik's men and they stop Owen.Deniro takes some of the pay money for his own expenses,but Statham refuses any of it.DeNiro leaves the rest for Owen who he says better use it well,because the government man he killed,plus his ex bosses of the Feathermen,will be coming after him.They leave Owen to his own devices and Statham and DeNiro return to their own lives.
The film is based on a true story from the /91 book called Feathermen.The author laid it all out there,but of course the British establishment denied everything from start to finish.My storytelling of this film which lasts a good two hours,is far less than a Reader's Digest version.I make the first three killings within a paragraph and those hits took over an hour of film time. As I said there is a LOT of plot,and so many twists and turns and intrigues,that one could really never do justice to it all.Just trust me,that if you just hang in there,you will be rewarded.The film does have a tendency to drift a little,such as their traveling back and forth between desert and civilization constantly,and who is on the hit list next,can get a little overwhelming.But the makers somehow manage to keep a straight heading throughout.
Technically speaking the film is clear and crisp in its 2:40:1 original a/r.There are cast interviews and 13 deleted scenes.
All in all a whopper of a story to tell,but based on true incidents.Statham is on game and as intense as always.DeNiro,while not having a significant role to play is also on target as is other star Clive Owen.Recommended.
on April 22, 2012
Here we have a movie with lots of star power so it's almost impossible to determine who the bad guy is. In the end, there isn't one. It almost comes off as a prequel to the 'real' movie which will feature the same cast but united as a force to be reckoned with. All the usual dumb stuff is present and for that to work, this movie needed that brainless force of righteousness which Statham has in spades, but so does DeNiro and Owen, either of whom would have made great bad guys but this movie just couldn't go there so it just comes off as kind of wimpy. Owen is great in it, making the most of a badly drawn secondary role. Statham and DeNiro are good too but they had little to work with here.