The Mechanic

February 2, 2011
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As I sat down to watch Simon West’s new film “The Mechanic,” and I saw the logo of CBS Films, the production company that produced it, I gave a sigh. I knew I was in for a disaster. CBS Films is the same company that produced the Dwayne Johnson disaster “Faster” that came out last year. The two films are very similar in the way that they are both empty action flicks.

This film didn’t look, sound, or feel like it was even touched by human hands. There is a director yes, and there are screenwriters, but I doubt they get much freedom; instead, they’re puppeteered by the nine producers. Every single character is a hollow shell of a person, just there to lead one draining gunfight after another.

Who needs character development when we can watch a car blow up seven times? Why give leading man Jason Statham a complex and interesting character (we know he’s capable of doing it) when he can just go around kicking butt? I admit he’s a pro at kicking butt, but it’s getting boring and making him look like a bad actor.

In fact in this movie he was given even less to do, just like Dwayne Johnson in “Faster.” I have a feeling that’s exactly what the producer’s want: they’re making a movie that will appeal to those young men who are thrilled by simple action movies.

Statham plays Arthur Bishop, an elite assassin, or as he calls it a ‘mechanic,’ who is hired to kill bad guys and either makes it look like an accident or like someone else did it. The concept itself is somewhat intriguing. Bishop has to plan ahead so the job goes exactly the way he wants it to go. West could have gone more into that planning and patience but instead Bishop just bounced around from one ‘job’ to the next, without saying much or running into any major problems. We know nothing about him, like how he came to be or where he came from. Therefore, we have no reason to care about him.

When his close friend Harry (Donald Sutherland) is killed, Bishop sets out for vengeance. He’s accompanied by Harry’s son Steve (Ben Foster). Bishop takes him under his wing and trains him. This was another area West could have expanded on, but no, he rushed through that within a few minutes, leaving their relationship undeveloped. Just so they could go do some more killing.

Then, before you know it the movie’s over and you leave the theater feeling no different from when you entered.





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