Thursday, 7 August 2014

3 Days To Kill (2014)

Directed by McG. A story by Luc Besson. Kevin Costner in the lead role. I can see 3 Days To Kill being a movie that many people are predisposed to dismiss, or avoid, but I ended up having fun with it. A lot of fun.

Costner is Ethan Renner, a CIA agent who remains the best man for the job whenever people need to be killed. Unfortunately, he's diagnosed with an illness that only gives him weeks to live, which leads to him desperately trying to rebuild some bridges with his daughter (Hailee Steinfeld) and wife (Connie Nielsen). The CIA have a lot of resources, however, and a woman named Vivi (Amber Heard) approaches Ethan with a proposal. She will offer him a treatment for his illness that isn't even on the market yet, if he helps her to kill a major target. And anyone else who gets in their way. Ethan agrees, but his job ends up being complicated by his attempts to enjoy some quality time with his daughter.

Co-written by Besson and Adi Hasak, 3 Days To Kill is enjoyably quirky stuff, anchored by a performance from Costner that may well remind viewers of his oh-so-cool turn as Frank Farmer in The Bodyguard. He may be many years older, and his character may be suffering from failing health, but he still has the confidence and the intelligence to be the most dangerous man in any room.

The rest of the cast don't fare as well, but all is forgiven whenever Costner is doing his thing. Steinfeld, in particular, suffers, due to the fact that her character is written as too moody, weak, and just bloody unappreciative (although she has some good reason to be lashing out). Heard is decent, strong and sexy as the woman who is now the boss of Renner. Nielsen is slightly sidelined for most of the movie, and Richard Sammel and Tomas Lemarquis are okay, if pretty unmemorable, as the main villains.

McG actually does fine in the director's chair. He's shown over the past few years that he isn't tied to the over-the-top style used in those Charlie's Angels movies, and the action beats here are nicely choreographed and edited. It's slick stuff, but smooth, reminding viewers that the main characters is cool and in control, for the most part. There may not be quite enough action moments for fans, but the quirky comedy is also nicely played out, making the whole thing a fun time for fans of the main star.

I'm sure I'll be in the minority with my love for this one, but I hope there are some other viewers out there who end up enjoying it as much as I did. Costner is, in my opinion, always worth your time. Even if he doesn't always pick the best movies to showcase his talent.


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