After Deadpool last year, Ryan Reynolds is a bankable comedy actor, not as if he wasn’t before but a string of bad choices prior to this it was difficult to bank on a Reynolds performance.
This movie sees him team up with movie veteran Samuel L Jackson, in an action comedy romp across most of the UK and surprisingly, The Netherlands, the perennial peaceful country, which is nice juxtaposition.
The world’s greatest hitman Darius Kincaid (Jackson) is called as a witness in the trial of a Belarusian dictator. He is assigned a bodyguard (Reynolds) whose career has fallen from it’s dizzying heights after losing a client.
The two must learn to co-incide as they avoid the dictators henchmen, who have killed every witness called thus far and get to Amsterdam to the trail.
My first thought after leaving this film was that it was more fun than it had any right to be. Sure it’s setup was so cliché that it wore cliché as a sporty trilby, but it’s kept afloat by two things, the chemistry between Jackson and Reynolds and some utterly bonkers and well choreographed action scenes.
Speaking of Reynolds and Jackson, it’s them that people see this movie for really and for their part they make the cliché script work with red-hot chemistry. Reynolds isn’t quite ‘full Deadpool’ here but he’s good for cutting wit and a rib-tickling action scene outside a waffle shop in Amsterdam. There’s also a love story side plot with Reynolds character, although this mainly falls into the background. As for Jackson, he doesn’t really play anything more than ‘a Samuel L Jackson character’ you know the one, he uses the word ‘motherfucker’ like most people use commas. While it isn’t exactly ground-breaking, it’s still entertaining to see Mr Jackson do his thing, and after all these years he’s understandably perfected his act, he also looks like he’s enjoying himself too, which is nice.
Elsewhere in the cast, we have a turn from Salma Hayek as Kincaid’s violent, foulmouthed wife, she and Jackson have one of the movies best scenes, as he tells the story of how they met, in a bar in El Salvador. There’s also a villainous turn from one Gary Oldman, who shows just how good a villain he can be, his screen time is short, but effective, making a hateable villain in roughly three scenes is a steep task but with someone with Oldman’s pedigree in the role, it’s no surprise he makes it work. There’s also a blink and you’ll miss it cameo from Richard E. Grant, as a coked-up lawyer, truly the role he was born to play, it was very strange to hear him swear, in that mildly posh accent.
In conclusion, think of this movie as a glazed doughnut, it isn’t haute cuisine, but it’s nice while it lasts and too much of it can give you diabetes.