Image by David Appleby. Courtesy of Lionsgate

Film Review: Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard

15:00 June 24, 2021
By: Fritz Esker

2017's The Hitman's Bodyguard was a decent action buddy comedy, but it was not a film that screamed out for a sequel. While I enjoyed it in the theater four years ago, it's not a film I thought about after seeing it. The sequel The Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard proves the filmmakers should have left it alone.

Ryan Reynolds plays bodyguard Michael Bryce. His license has been suspended, but he's soon roped into service by the wife (Salma Hayek) of his hitman frenemy Darius (Samuel L. Jackson) after the hired killer has been kidnapped. The film then pivots into a plot about a billionaire (Antonio Banderas) planning a devastating cyber-attack on Europe.

The biggest problem here is the script. The plotting is lazy and indifferent, even by action movie standards. An Interpol officer (Frank Grillo) is introduced in the first act and seems like he'll be an important character, but then disappears for most of the remainder of the film. Hayek, a talented actress, is reduced to playing someone who mainly screams at people (and kills them). Reynolds and Jackson bicker and bicker and bicker some more. That kind of back-and-forth between characters can be funny, but it doesn't work when that's practically the only way the characters communicate.

The end result is a loud, shrill, gory, mostly unfunny film.

*1/2 stars (out of four)

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