Movie Reviews

Reynolds and Jackson Are At the Top of Their Game In “The Hitman’s Bodyguard”


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Review 7


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“The Hitman’s Bodyguard” (Lionsgate/Summit)

There is something to be said about chemistry between two actors. Usually that refers to the on screen relationship between a man and a woman, but in other situations it refers to the way two male actors enhance each other’s performance. . Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy had chemistry in “48 Hours”. Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker had it in “Rush Hour”. Now Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L Jackson have it in abundance in “The Hitman’s Bodyguard.”

Reynolds plays Michael Bryce, a bodyguard for hire with an almost perfect record – almost. Jackson plays Darius Kincaid, a hitman who has information needed to convict dictator Vladislav Dukhovich (Gary Oldman) of crimes against humanity. He is in London and the trial is at the Hague. The problem is keeping him alive till he can get there and testify. That is where Michael comes in.

Reynolds has proven himself to be a top box office draw mainly through his work in “Deadpool”. He is handsome, funny and can act. That makes him a triple threat. The same can be said of Jackson. But where Reynolds is droll and somewhat self effacing, Jackson’s style is more in your face. In this movie they are two sides of a coin. They curse at each other, banter with each other, and fight with each other. Everything they do and every way they act is fun fuel for the audience.

Throw in a profanity spewing Salma Hayek as Kincaid’s wife and you have excitement and comedy by the bucketloads. These three, though never on screen together at the same time, make a simple chase movie a goldmine of excitement, adventure and humor. It wasn’t supposed to be this good but some casting director had the right touch.

Now for some there will be too much violence and/or too much profanity. Every other word is a curse word and every other scene is a violent one. Some more distressing than others. But the good hearted banter between the two leads makes all of this more acceptable than you would imagine.

The film is rated R for profanity and violence.

The trailer doesn’t prepare you for the entertainment this film provides. It is funnier than you think, more exciting than you think, and more over the top entertaining than you think it will be. It has been some time now since a movie so totally surprised me by being so, so much better than I expected. Reynolds shows he can still bring a movie to life, and Jackson shows he is a comic/adventure leading man of the highest order.

Make sure you don’t write this one off as being just an average movie. We have had a ton of those this summer, but finally we get something worth watching. Reynolds and Jackson are a deadly duo who deliver on the action and the comedy. This is a movie worth seeing a second time just to catch all the great one liners you missed the first time around.

I scored “The Hitman’s Bodyguard” a protected 7 out of 10.

Jackie K Cooper

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