Review: The Gunman

Synopsis: A sniper on a mercenary assassination team, kills the minister of mines of the Congo. Terrier’s successful kill shot forces him into hiding. Returning to the Congo years later, he becomes the target of a hit squad himself.
Director: Pierre Morel
Starring: Sean Penn, Idris Elba, Javier Bardem, Jasmine Trinca
Release Date: 16th April 2015

Somewhere within the first 20 minutes of this movie, HA accidentally knocked an entire glass of white wine into my lap. Naturally, HA immediately went into a flurry of hushed apologies and we both laughed.
Unfortunately this wet event was more enjoyable than this entire movie.

The Gunman has a Liam Neeson style plot; Sean Penn‘s character is an ex-hitman who, 8 years after he kills the Minister for Mining, is on the run from those trying to kill him. The movie is even helmed by the director of the first Taken movie, Pierre Morel.
Unfortunately, this movie is incredibly boring. It tries so hard to be taken seriously instead of a mindless popcorn movie that it misses the mark completely, becoming an incredibly dull and tedious film. It only gives you glimpses of what it could have been; there are some great action sequences but they’re shot so quickly that they’re actually exhausting on the eye.
The Gunman has a spectacular cast of Sean Penn, Idris Elba, Javier Bardem and Mark Rylance but they are all so underused and undervalued; given roles that don’t attest to their skills. Javier Bardem in particular is such as incredible actor, but he is so wrong in this role as the jealous, drunk husband of Penn’s love interest. Penn’s love interest, played by Jasmine Trinca, serves no other purpose than to be used as bait. I cannot even recall any lines she actually said in the film that weren’t the name of Penn’s character.
Sean Penn uses the film as a vehicle to show off his incredibly fit body with a number of gratuitous shirtless scenes, but the role of action hero seems an ill-fit for him.

I’d take a lap full of wine any day than sit through that again.


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