Verdict: 3 / 5
Cat-and-Mouse style arrangements between charming criminals and no-nonsense cops are a dime a dozen, and even setting yourself in London rather than America does little more to make it seem more original, except to have the accents be a bit more special. But can a collection of talented actors move a film from average to bearable, from okay to special, despite how little they have to work with?
Professional criminal Jacob Sternwood (Strong) is lured out of hiding in Iceland when he receives news that his son has been attacked. Upon his return to London, he finds himself involved with police detective Max Lewinsky (McAvoy) a man who swore vengeance on him many years before. Forming an uneasy alliance, they uncover more plots, etc etc and so on. A film like this depends entirely upon style, and style can never be described in a plot analysis. This is director Eran Creevy’s first feature length blockbuster debut, and despite hints of talent, this does seem to be visible, as some of the best scenes end up slightly ruined by hasty or incorrect editing, which I would hope is something that would be improved as Creevy gains experience.
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McAvoy and Strong bring powerful performances that makes their characters fun to watch, but they don’t have much development as people, so the actors are left to do as much as they can with what they are given. As the action scenes alternate between gratuitous and enjoyable on an unpredictable scale, there just doesn’t seem to be enough to carry the pre-set scenes that were imagined.
A few, climactic twists are well done, and convey suitable emotion, but this is hardly comparable to the similar films of Guy Ritchie yet, even in his early years. Still, he married Madonna, and as of yet Creevy has not done so. Maybe there’s still hope. I’ll be looking out for his work to come.