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September 23, 2011
Review - " Killer Elite "  -  (in theaters) By Roland Hansen
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Killer Elite
Directed by: Gary McKendry
Starring: Jason Statham, Clive Owen, Robert De Niro, Yvonne Strahovski

If there is an actor that has been combating type-casted roles, it has to
be Jason Statham. The guy can act (see films like The Bank Job, Lock,
Stock, & Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch), but all his success has been in
fast cars with guns (see films like The Transporter, Crank). So when you
have films that make money but aren't great for your career, and have
other roles that actually show your range as an actor, what do you do?

That's right, put the two together.

Killer Elite takes some hard hitting action and places it into the world of
espionage and covert operations. Danny Bryce (Jason Statham) is a
retired gun-for-hire who just wants to live peacefully with his girlfriend
Anne (Yvonne Strahovski), but is called back into action after learning
that his mentor, Hunter (Robert De Niro), has been taken hostage in
Oman. In order to free him, Danny takes one last job, which is to kill
three former British SAS agents. However, Danny's new team is spotted,
and a team of former SAS agents send Spike (Clive Owen) to protect

The film works due to the strengths of the leading actors, Statham and
Owen. They each carry scenes on their own, and when the two share
the screen, its even better. Both pull off action and drama with a
practiced hand, and easily make up for the shortcomings of the minor
characters they work around.
Unfortunately, many of the minor characters
do drag things down a bit, and the film is
clearly lopsided in Statham's favor. One of
Statham's crew seems to get more screen
time than Clive Owen, at least for the first
two-thirds of the film. Then Robert De Niro
barely has anything to do that it feels like
they need to create a situation so he does
more than repeat that Statham's character
should just get out of the game. And the
more I think about it, it seems like that
Yvonne Strahovski is only present to help
make De Niro's character not seem so weak
and give him something to do in the last act.

But the size of the script is also one of the
major flaws; there's so much going on with a
lot of ground to cover that some things don't
receive proper emphasis. Tracking down and
taking out targets seem almost easy and
trivial, even though it's one of the main points
of the story. The details are there, so you're
not left with a hokey feeling, it just again
points out all the things going on with this
story. The film already clocks in over 2 hours,
and could have easily gone for more.

Overall Killer Elite was good entertainment if
you already know what to expect from a movie
featuring Jason Statham (The
Schwarzenegger of our Generation perhaps?)
I will be honest I only went to see it because
there was nothing better out at the time, (OK,
truth be told I went to see it because Yvonne
Strahovski was in it).....would I watch it again?
I am afraid not.