Reluctant hero Wesley Gibson is an angry office drone (Fight Club without the social or political underpinnings) who’s recruited into an unknown secret society of assassins called the Fraternity; they kill potential evil-doers before the evil gets done, thus keeping the universe balanced, etc. (Insert random comics/sci-fi influence blueprint here.)
Stentorian Morgan Freeman heads this "ancient order” (aren’t they all?) and with his team of bad-asses (headed in full tough sexpot flight by Angelina Jolie), he trains Wesley in the ways of getting pounded in the face and bending bullets through the air to accomplish the least likely assassinations since L.H. Oswald.
Along the way, Bekmambetov amps up the hyper-stylised, slo-mo CGI action beats in much the same ways he did in his Russian films Night Watch and Day Watch, while scribes Michael Brandt and Derek Haas do everything they can to take Wanted far from its graphic novel roots, leaving little more than the title and the team of assassins.
Though it lacks pretty much any original thought, Wanted is a competently made knock-off designed to appeal to Red Bull chugging young men who take a marketing fed line like, "what the fuck have you done with your life?” and adopt it as a personal philosophy in the form of a T-shirt slogan.
To that end, everyone plays along and has a good time: Jolie gives her pouty lipped all, the action is pumped to physics-defying levels and most surprisingly, James McAvoy (who’s been doing excellent dramatic work in the likes of The Last King of Scotland and Atonement) proves himself more than capable as a thinking man’s action hero.
Not that there’s any thinking going on here — what kind of T-shirt philosophy would that be? (Universal)
ReviewsMar 20, 2015
If you didn't know it already, or hadn't figured out after hearing his "joke" at this year's Academy Awards, Sean Penn is kind of a dick. Bu...
ReviewsMar 19, 2015
Watership DownMartin Rosen
Though Martin Rosen's adaptation of Richard Adams' famed novel Watership Down encompasses an abundance of themes and concepts including fata...
ReviewsMar 19, 2015
Drake's Homecoming: The Lost FootageEvan Kosiner
Anyone with even a cursory knowledge of Drake's career knows that no, Aubrey Graham did not actually start from the bottom. By all accounts ...
ReviewsMar 17, 2015
Maude: The Complete Series
Although Bea Arthur will always be associated with The Golden Girls, her real star turn came back in the '70s when she was the title charact...