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Film: The Mechanic (A)
Director: Simon West
Cast: Jason Statham, Ben Foster, Donald Sutherland
Rating: ***

Arthur Bishop is an amoral assassin who works for a shadowy agency. Every slaying is a symphony for the methodical Bishop, who is loath to leave behind a mess. After learning that his mentor Harry McKenna (Sutherland) leaked information that led to a botched operation in South Africa, he takes out the old man in cold blood.

As fate would have it, Bishop chooses to take McKenna’s self-destructive wreck of a son Steve (Foster) as his protégé and the two work together, taking on characters that are (naturally) a tad greyer in shade than them.

The Mechanic, an up-to-date remake of the Charles Bronson classic, doesn’t stimulate you intellectually, but then again that’s not what it set out to do.

When viewed in perspective, the film packs its punches with an above average fight scene between Steve and a towering homosexual, one of the noteworthy confrontations in the film.

Acting wise, nothing much is required from Statham who essays a stoic killing machine who is always on top of things. Foster is great as the bundle-of-nerves loose cannon Steve who has the capacity to get lost in his own emotions, and realises that it is vengeance that underlies his endeavours.

While The Mechanic is predictable, there are enough well-choreographed action sequences for fans of the genre to fawn over after the picture comes to a halt.

Elvis D’Silva reviews The Mechanic. Post YOUR reviews here!

For a while now, I have craved an all-out action movie that delivers the satisfying crunch, crash, boom and pow of mindless cinematic violence. The trailers for The Mechanic seemed to suggest that it was exactly that kind of film. And I was not disappointed.

Jason Statham plays Arthur Bishop, a skilled and meticulous hitman whose jobs sometimes require him to make a death look like an accident (as evidenced in the opening sequence) and sometimes he is meant to send a message.

He lives a spartan life in a home far enough away that civilization cannot invade upon his personal space, but close enough that he is connected to the Internet over which he accesses his assignments and news about the world at large.

There is a mentor named Harry McKenna (played with snowy-haired ease by Donald Sutherland), a girl (Mini Anden) and clearly the money is pretty good.

Everything is going fine until the day he is tapped to kill his mentor by Dean (Tony Goldwyn), a man who works with Harry and claims to have proof that Harry was involved in unsanctioned bad deeds. Harry’s death brings forth an unforeseen complication — his estranged son Steve (Ben Foster). Before long Arthur has taken Steve under his wing and is teaching him the ropes on how to be a ‘mechanic’.

The Mechanic is enjoyable to watch because the director Simon West (Con Air) and his leading man always seem to be operating with extreme efficiency. Decisions are made quickly, developments are conveyed economically and there are enough adrenalized action set pieces to keep the genre fans satisfied.

Are there plot holes? Yes. Big ones if you spend a few minutes thinking about them.

But this is not a movie to be watched for narrative structure or character development. This is a movie where things go boom, guns go bang and words are spoken with an economy that allows us to appreciate the explosions and the breaking glass without too much distraction.

If you are looking for a fun time at the movies this weekend, The Mechanic has the means to satisfy.

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