As the self proclaimed straight shooter of the film – his motto is boring is better – Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds) is constantly mocked by Darius Kincade (Samuel L. Jackson). It’s hilarious to see Reynolds’ face crumple every time Jackson rains on his parade. Bryce is a ‘triple A’ (as we’re reminded constantly) security executive aka bodyguard who has to transport hitman Kincade to the Hague. The mission is perilous: Kincade has to testify against dictator and genocide orchestrator Vladislav Dukhovich (Gary Oldman) whose henchmen are out for blood.
In all its theatrical trailers, The Hitman’s Bodyguard eschews the action route instead focusing entirely on the wisecracking comedy of its two protagonists. Clearly, whoever cut the promo knew where the strength of the film lay. That is to say, the tried and very tired plot of The Hitman’s Bodyguard pales in comparison to the comedic camaraderie between the two stars. Unfortunately for the two, it’s not enough to keep the audience entertained.
When you pay to watch an action comedy, the former is as important as the latter. Plus, all of it ought to complement the story its set around. Take away the humour and there’s an unnecessary and incongruent premise of the evil dictator Dukhovich who needs to atone for his crimes. A thoroughly wasted Oldman does deliver a rousing albeit impactless speech towards the end. Add to this mess, there’s a gag-worthy angle about the importance of true love. Here we have Salma Hayek as Sonia, Kincade’s wife who is reduced to a stereotypical and well-endowed (objectifying close-ups you can’t miss) potty-mouthed Latina. In turn, Bryce’s love interest is the French-English Interpol agent, Amelia Roussel (Élodie Yung) who has left him two years ago because of a misunderstanding. Both break into their native language when angered hereby further perpetuating the sexist notion that women shun rational communication when ‘hysterical’.
Reynolds and Jackson may be the lure of The Hitman’s Bodyguard but everything else about it will be a deterrent.
Source: The Hindu