- Starring: Gina Carano, Ewan McGregor (Star Wars: Episode III), and Michael Fassbender (300)
- Directed by: Steven Soderbergh
- Synopsis: “Mallory Kane is a highly trained operative who works for a government security contractor in the dirtiest, most dangerous corners of the world. After successfully freeing a Chinese journalist held hostage, she is double crossed and left for dead by someone close to her in her own agency. Suddenly the target of skilled assassins who know her every move, Mallory must find the truth in order to stay alive.” (haywiremovie.com)
- Rated: R for some violence
“Dear, Gina Carano, where were you at the casting call for SALT?”
Okay, let me come at this review in a different way than usual.
For those of you who do not know, I live in southern New Mexico in the United States (Yes, New Mexico is part of the United States…not to be confused with the nation of Mexico). My particular city of residence, though, lies approximately 50 miles away from the U.S.-Mexico border. As with every area of the world, there are several little characteristics that display and/or define the cultural environment of where I live.
One of those characteristics is food. (And boy, do I love the food in my area.) Mmmm! 😀
I’ve never tried one before (don’t fancy having a scorpion in my house, let alone my mouth)! The disturbing fact is: no matter how much sweet candy surrounds the bug, at it’s core still lies…you guessed it…a nasty bug!
Does this have a point? Yes. Yes it does.
Haywire is nothing more than a bug wrapped in a lollipop. The movie may look good, but at its core, beneath the layers, it is BAD!
Like this lollipop, Haywire may appear somewhat tasty to the moviegoers’ “film tastebuds.” Look at what it has to offer:
–Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh (Traffic, the Ocean’s trilogy, Contagion) films in his very recognizable style with limited use of music.
–Veteran cast: Michael Douglas, Ewan McGregor, Antonio Banderas, and Michael Fassbender all bring with them some experience that shows onscreen.
-And even, (*WARNING* Possible heretical statement about to be made!) even Channing Tatum acted in a believable manner that I could buy in to. (Can’t believe I just said that. If some of you readers unsubscribe because of that statement, I understand…sorry.)
–Gina Carano looks amazing and is the epitome of what a female action star should be. (Take notes, Angelina Jolie.)
–ACTION! The action is superb and appears so realistic without the embellishments of additional pulsing music, talking/joking between the fighters, and extra amplified sound effects that have become staples in just about every spy/action flick.
But, here’s the scorpion that stings underneath those great-looking candycoated layers: the movie’s plot, acting, lack of character development/connection, and order of events make it a highly boring, and often confusing, string of scenes connected by some fantastically choreographed fight sequences and a few believable moments of dialogue.
Yes, Gina Carano can fight. and oh boy can she fight! But her acting does need work. The real acting came from the veterans in this one. But, in her defense, she did not have much to work with from the script, even as the lead. Writer, Lem Dobbs, whose last full-motion picture screenplay was 2001’s The Score, seemingly borrowed parts of the Bourne series, Salt, and The Long Kiss Goodnight, and decided to make it all one. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work well.
There is NO connection with the characters at all. True, it attempts to drum up some feelings between characters here and there. But ultimately, you will find yourself caring nothing for ANY of the characters and only caring about 3 things:
1- when the next fight scene comes,
2- when the end credits will roll, and
3- when you get to see Michael Fassbender or Gina Carano again.
Haywire suffers from so much going on and no development of any of it.
You will end up asking the following questions during the film: Is this in the past? Are we in present time? Wait, which guy? What was that guy’s name again? Where did Gina Carano come from? (she looks amazing) What company did what to who? How did she do that? Is that even possible? Wasn’t that the guy from that one movie? Wait, where are they now? How did we end up in Barcelona? Who was that dead guy again, and what did he do?
No, seriously. You will.
Mr. Soderbergh, while you successfully filmed this in a style all your own that allows the viewer to practically be a silent observer in the scene, your editing crew did a disservice to Gina Carano, Michael Douglas, Michael Fassbender, Ewan McGregor, Antonio Banderas, and, yes, even Channing Tatum with this one. There’s a better story told in the trailer than there is in the movie itself.
Much like that lollipop, it was fun at the beginning and the possibility of it being great tempted me to give it a shot and stick with it. I almost left…and should have because, once I worked my way past those attractive layers, the sting of disappointment still arose.
Thanks for reading! Happy Watching!
Score: 2 out of 5 stars for Haywire
–T, The Focused Filmographer
up next: “Trailer Time Thursday!”