The Hitman's Bodyguard

The Hitman's Bodyguard

In Theatres: 
Aug 18, 2017
Running Time: 
118 minutes

Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson are two of the most charismatic actors working in Hollywood today, so them team up together for The Hitman’s Bodyguard provides an double dose of bravado that’s impossible to ignore. Their chemistry is undeniable, and while the plot leaves more to be desired, they both bring their A-game in which each one continually attempts to top the other. It’s over-the-top, but still manages to deliver some well placed laughs.


Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds) was once a triple A rated protection agent but when one of his clients is assassinated while on duty he finds himself now only able to guard low tier businessmen. An opportunity to redeem his status arrives when he receives a call from his ex, Interpol agent Amelia Roussel (Élodie Yung), who has a high profile client who needs protection while they escort him to court to testify against a Russian dictator accused of war crimes. The client turns out to be hitman Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson) who shares a past with Bryce. Suffice to say that the two of them don’t get along at all, but if they’re going to survive long enough to get to the courthouse they’re going to have to work together no matter how reluctant they might be.


The Hitman’s Bodyguard might not have the best story or the best action scenes, but it works because it brings out the best in both Reynolds and Jackson. Both Bryce and Kincaid are the personification of the actors taken to the extreme. Reynolds is the “Bodyguard with a Mouth,” who always has to point out every observation with some witty retort. Meanwhile, Jackson just won’t shut up at all and seems like he’s having an absolute blast with the role. He does what he wants, when he wants, and no one is going to stop him. They’re great together and carry the entire film without a doubt.


What’s unfortunate about the film is Gary Oldman’s lackluster performance as the main villain. He’s known for being able to transform into any character, from Sid Vicious to Mason Verger, but he just doesn’t fit the film as the evil Russian dictator. He mostly plays the role with a straight face, which just doesn’t work opposite the outrageousness of Reynolds and Jackson. Even Salma Hayek, who plays Kincaid’s wife locked away in prison, embraces the crazy, although her character perhaps goes too far overboard into annoying territory. Out of everyone involved, it seems like Oldman didn’t get the memo.


The Hitman’s Bodyguard plays to the strengths of Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson, and because of that it succeeds. Put in any two other actors and the film just wouldn’t have worked. It’s a testament to their ability. It may not be the best comedy or action film, but the two of them make one of the best duos around.

Matt Rodriguez
Review by Matt Rodriguez
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