Review | Film review: The Hitman’s Bodyguard – Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson in gratuitous action comedy
Patrick Hughes’ buddy film is a mix of foul-mouthed humour and slick, violent action with some ’80s nostalgia, but the tone is wrong and rarely raises a smile
There’s a flashback moment in Patrick Hughes’ action comedy where Samuel L. Jackson’s hitman explains to Ryan Reynolds’ bodyguard how he met his wife – a now-incarcerated Salma Hayek. Cut to a bar where Lionel Ritchie’s Hello is playing. Hayek kills several thugs, gruesomely stabbing one in the throat with a broken bottle. Jackson’s contract killer is smitten. And they say romance is dead.
It doesn’t help that Hughes blends a high body count and heavyweight material, with Jackson’s Darius Kincaid being escorted by Reynolds’ down-on-his-luck hired gun Michael Bryce to The Hague to give evidence against Gary Oldman’s former president of Belarus. The fact this East European despot has been responsible for some truly heinous crimes doesn’t really sit well alongside the leads’ wise-cracking banter.
The Hitman’s Bodyguard opens on August 17
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