Wednesday, May 11, 2016

year 5 day 137

movie: American Ultra
starring: Jesse Eisenberg, Connie Britton
genre: Action
year: 2015
format: Netflix Canada

plot: A sleeper agent is activated hours before he's scheduled to be killed.

This does not say anywhere that it's based on a graphic novel or game (if it did I missed the credit) but it feels like it was.  There is one scene where the big fight is happening in a store that is seen as if first person shoot out game.

The idea is there. But the movie just barely skims the surface of what it could have been. It was obvious from the last few minutes, that it was originally designed with the idea of a sequel, but it doesn't carry enough weight for that.
The joke is that there is no real joke. The lead character is unaware of his own purpose or skill set, and even as it's revealed to him, he plays it too hip. There were no flash back or lead ups that would have made the big reveal more believable. He's this victim for 90% of the movie, then suddenly the audience are suppose to buy into him being the bullet chaser.  The big twist of the Kristen Stewart character being an agent as well, is not a twist but something you can see coming five miles away. The only question is in doing so, why is she unable to defend herself?

There were a few moments of decent nods to action films, such as the use of a spoon to slaughter one villain, a dust pan for another, and the set up of the fireworks which pays for itself twice, once near the beginning of the film dealing with a bomb and again near the end as a distraction. I did get a laugh out of the grenade catching stunt.

what did I learn? Sometimes violence for the sake of violence distracts from the actual point.

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