The Hitman’s Bodyguard Review

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By: Justin Jasso (@jjasso007)

Let’s be perfectly honest: Deadpool reinvented Ryan Reynolds’ career and made him a relevant studio draw today. Since Mr. Pool made his way to screens globally, Reynolds has been in a number of films – all of the action type, which he easily feels comfortable with. Thus his latest film should come as no surprise. Pairing him with Samuel L. Jackson and having Patrick Hughes (The Expendables 3) direct only made perfect sense for this over-the-top, not nearly believable yet still entertaining, film. Ladies and gentlemen, buckle up for The Hitman’s Bodyguard.



Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds) was a Triple-A status bodyguard, protecting people around the globe in need of his services. That is, until one of his top clients was killed. Fast forward some time and Bryce is at the bottom of the food chain, living out of his car and taking whatever measly bodyguard jobs he can get. Soon, he’s contacted by his old girlfriend, Interpol agent Amelia Roussel (Elodie Yung), who needs his help transporting a client to a court hearing meant to take down criminal warlord Vladislav Dukhovich (Gary Oldman, in all his evil glory). Unfortunately for Bryce, the client he needs to keep alive is none other than Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson), who has over 200 confirmed kills, and has nearly killed Bryce no fewer than 28 times. It’s safe to say the two are not friends. Yet Kincaid is willing to testify if it means his wife, Sonia (Salma Hayek – salty, full of fire and just someone you do not want to #$%* with) out of jail. So it’ll be up to Bryce to outsmart, out-gun, and out-maneuver an inexhaustible army of Belarusian mercenaries to make sure Kincaid is there on time.

The Hitman’s Bodyguard plays almost like a Roadrunner and Wile E. Coyote cartoon, where the most impossible things happen, like people taking bullets, then jumping off buildings and lightly limping away. It’s so far fetched, so over the top, yet still a joy to watch because, hey, its Sam and Ryan. It’s easy to see that this film probably went through many rewrites to make sure it lent enough dialogue to the strengths of their lead actors. At the same time, it feels almost like a parody at times, while also paying homage to action films of yesteryear like Rambo and Commando, as well as buddy action films. With this type of film, one of the big problems is the heavily computer-assisted scenes involved or the overuse of stunt doubles, which are pretty blatant at times. And while this is an action comedy, the action isn’t as abundant as one would imagine, or hope, from Deadpool himself.



Reynolds and Jackson are the heart and soul of the film, and the real fun comes from their interactions. Reynolds’ character was at the top of his game and took his job very seriously, thus the death of a client left a major impact on his life. He’s almost like a version of Al Bundy, relishing the days of old and yearning for the time when life was good. Yet, despite current circumstances, he still takes the job seriously, even to the point of going out of his way to protect a man that, seemingly, cannot be killed. Jackson seems to fit into the role of Kincaid like an old glove, more than comfortable with dialogue that stresses the use of the word “motherfu#$&r” more than a few times. We even get a nice line from Reynolds’ character saying, “This guy single-handedly ruined the word ‘motherfu#$&r.” Classic! Salma Hayek is more than scary in her role as Kincaid’s wife, and she just oozes pure enjoyment with each word that spits out of her mouth. The only other notable actor is Gary Oldman, whose dialogue is minimal at best, yet he does all of his acting through makeup and the perfect use of body language, which he has all but mastered at this point!

The Hitman’s Bodyguard arrives at the tail end of summer, and rightfully so: the box office is slowing down and the films are no longer at the summer blockbuster level of epicness as, say, Wonder Woman. The only real thing that keeps this film afloat is the relationship between Reynolds and Jackson. The action, while entertaining, isn’t anything we haven’t seen before, and the fact that it is so over the top at times, making it feel like something that came out of the early 90’s, doesn’t help, especially considering the sophistication of today’s audiences and the need for more realism. The Hitman’s Bodyguard has enough laughs to carry it through the film, and plenty of one liners, plus profanity from one of the best in the business. Though I can’t say it’s a must-see film, it’s also not terrible. And with the films in theaters at the current moment, it may be your best option for the weekend.


Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars


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