Monday, January 19, 2015


  My how the mighty have fallen. Director Michael Mann (The Insider, Heat, Miami Vice) has made an absolute waste of time (probably why it was released in the movie graveyard they call January). I can't begin to count the ways this movie fails.

     The star is Chris Hemsworth as a convicted "Blackhat", known for his computer hacking skills. He is released from prison to help stop an international hacker who's intentions aren't very clear until late in the film. Mr. Hemsworth is a terrific action star but is miscast here as a cerebral computer expert.  Making matters worth, the ridiculous script puts him front and center of the police action so he can fight and shoot the various bad guys protecting the hacker.

      Co-starring is Viola Davis, who tries to add some serious credibility to the story and Wei Tang, an Asian actress in her first English starring role. Besides the fact her English is not very good, her character exists solely to fall in love at first sight with Mr. Hemsworth and not very much else. Leehom Wang, another Asian star does add authenticity to his role as does John Ortiz in a small role as Ms. Davis's superior.

        The sound mix is poor and the cinematography is dark so it's not always easy to hear or see what's happening clearly. The soundtrack and overall atmosphere seems lifted from an old episode of Miami Vice. While there are a few (and I mean few) of the old Michael Mann flourishes, the film is a major letdown in what could have been a solid cyber thriller.

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