5 may. 2011

My Review: The Mechanic (6/10)


¨Victory comes with preparation.¨

The Mechanic is a remake of a 1972 film of the same name staring Charles Bronson in another of his infamous revenge movies. Bronson made at least a dozen of those flicks. I never saw the original one, but I didn`t have to because I`ve seen several films like The Mechanic, action packed and dealing with revenge. Jason Statham was the right choice to play the role Bronson once played in the 70`s since in a way he is becoming the Bronson of our generation. Statham has made several films like The Mechanic in the past, The Transporter being perhaps one of his best roles to date. Statham might not be one of the most talented actors in the industry, but he is good at action. He seems to be playing pretty much the same role in all his movies (the tough guy act), but given the right script his films can be entertaining. The script was originally written by Lewis John Carlino for the original Mechanic, and it was adapted by Richard Wenk (16 Blocks) for this newer version. The Mechanic is directed by Simon West, the guy who brought us Con Air, and he`s been around action films for a while. This probably won`t rank among his best works, but The Mechanic still manages to entertain with all its twist (some more predictable than others), and nonstop action scenes. The Mechanic is a very violent film; it has a lot of blood and raw scenes. The problem with the film is that we`ve seen this sort of action movie in the past, but Statham still makes it worthwhile.

Jason Statham is Arthur Bishop, a ¨mechanic¨, in other words a hitman, or an elite assassin (whichever you prefer to call it), and he`s one of the best in his field. He`s quiet, professional, and remains unattached to his victims. He receives his targets via an internet add sent to him by his boss Dean (Tony Goldwyn) and prepares for each job in his quiet bayou, which serves as his hideout. Arthur is a perfectionist, he studies every detail about his victims and if he can he carries the job out as silently as possible. Sometimes you never even know he was there, making the murders appear as natural deaths. Arthur is troubled when he receives his next target because it is Harry McKenna (Donald Sutherland), his friend and the man who taught him everything about being a mechanic. Apparently Harry has betrayed the company and sold out some of the other mechanics. Arthur follows through with his assignment, but when Harry`s son, Steve (Ben Foster), wants Arthur to teach him everything he knows about being a hitman the situation becomes complicated. Arthur has a strict code, he`s a perfectionist, and likes to eliminate his targets as clean as possible, but Steve is more volatile and likes to get dirty. Arthur tries to teach Steve how to remain detached from his victims, but things begin to get messy. The situation gets worse when Arthur discovers that he was set up and that Harry never had betrayed the company, it was the other way around. It`s time for Arthur to send his company a message for fooling with him.

I really liked the opening scene of the film, I thought Arthur`s first assignment was well thought out and it helped establish his character. He did his job quietly and clean, and then he headed to his hideout, turned on some classical music and got rid of all the evidence like if nothing had ever happened. The Mechanic begins with clean kills, but then it becomes increasingly more violent as the film progresses. Then the twists begin showing up and several plot holes can be found, but they are numbed down by all the violence. As long as the viewer remains detached to the plot, like Arthur is detached to his victims, then they will have a good time with this action packed film, but if they sit down and analyze it scene by scene then it probably won`t be very entertaining at all. The Mechanic isn`t a great film, but it still is entertaining thanks to Statham and Foster who are great in the action scenes. It’s far from being memorable and I probably won’t be seeing it anytime soon, but it`s still worth a onetime viewing. This isn’t among Statham best films (like Bank Job, or his collaborations with Guy Ritchie), but it is still better than most of his recent movies. Foster and Statham form a deadly partnership and make this movie worth the while. In summary, The Mechanic is a forgettable, but entertaining film.

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