Spy movie entertains, breaks new ground
American Assassin, Rated: MA15+ Review: Mitchell Woodcock Rating: 7/10
Spy movies are arguably a worn-out genre that has been dominated by the likes of Tom Cruise and the various James Bonds for far too long.
Yet American Assassin brings a refreshing, different take on the patriotic trope of the US saving the world.
The movie centres on Mitch Rapp (Dylan O’Brien), a young American man set on revenge against the terrorists who killed his fiancee in a bloody massacre on a beach in Spain.
Rapp is caught by the CIA attempting to kill the terrorists and, because of the skills he has spent the past 18 months acquiring, is recruited to be part of a black operations unit codenamed Orion. From here, he is trained by the cold-hearted and deadly Stan Hurly (Michael Keaton), who despises Rapp because he believes his only motivation is to get revenge and not for the patriotic purposes of saving the good old US of A.
I expected the movie to follow the plotline of Rapp finds terrorist and gets his revenge and we all live happily ever after.
So I was surprised when Hurly and Rapp joined forces with double-agent Annika (Shiva Negar) to try to stop the mysterious Ghost, who was building a nuclear bomb for the Iranians.
There is barely a mention of the other terrorists, and instead we are left wondering who Ghost is and why he seems to have a connection with Hurly (although it quickly becomes obvious).
The movie offers some fantastic fight scenes, including the climax — a fight between Rapp and Ghost.
Michael Keaton is impressive as the cold-hearted mentor Stan Hurly in American Assassin.