Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Cast: Morgan Freeman, James McAvoy, Thomas
Kretschmann, Terence Stamp, Angelina Jolie
RunTime: 1 hr 50 mins
Released By: UIP
Official Website: http://www.wantedmovie.com/
Opening Day: 26 June 2008
Based upon Mark Millar’s explosive graphic novel series
and helmed by stunning visualist director Timur Bekmambetov—creator
of the most successful Russian film franchise in history,
the Night Watch series—Wanted tells the tale of one
apathetic nobody’s transformation into an unparalleled
enforcer of justice. In 2008, the world will be introduced
to a hero for a new generation: Wesley Gibson.
25-year-old Wes (James McAvoy) was the most disaffected, cube-dwelling
drone the planet had ever known. His boss chewed him out hourly,
his girlfriend ignored him routinely and his life plodded
on interminably. Everyone was certain this disengaged slacker
would amount to nothing. There was little else for Wes to
do but wile away the days and die in his slow, clock-punching
Until he met a woman named Fox (Angelina Jolie).
After his estranged father is murdered, the deadly sexy Fox
recruits Wes into the Fraternity, a secret society that trains
Wes to avenge his dad’s death by unlocking his dormant
powers. As she teaches him how to develop lightning-quick
reflexes and phenomenal agility, Wes discovers this team lives
by an ancient, unbreakable code: carry out the death orders
given by fate itself.
With wickedly brilliant tutors—including the Fraternity’s
enigmatic leader, Sloan (Morgan Freeman)—Wes grows to
enjoy all the strength he ever wanted. But, slowly, he begins
to realize there is more to his dangerous associates than
meets the eye. And as he wavers between newfound heroism and
vengeance, Wes will come to learn what no one could ever teach
him: he alone controls his destiny.
Putting together two Academy Award winners (one is a hot babe)
and a rising Scottish actor alongside a hotshot Russian director
making his Hollywood debut sounds like an excellent combination
does it not? Makes it feel like you must watch it? But this
reviewer left the cinema, having WANTED watching it but not
really satisfied by it.
who has seen Timur Berkambetov’s work on Nightwatch
and Daywatch should more or less be prepared for his style
on the silver screen. He had done a magnificent job on Nightwatch
but all that machismo fizzled a little with Daywatch which
fell a bit short compared to its predecessor. And now that
he has tackled Hollywood head on, the result is more blah
star, James McAvoy stars as Wesley Gibson, a man who is a
nobody in most people’s life, someone you are likely
to pass by and not take notice of. His life though is overturned
in mere minutes when Fox (Angelina Jolie) barges into his
life at a pharmacy, telling him that she is there to save
him and a shootout occurs. Frightened and confused, he is
told that The Fraternity will protect him from those who have
killed his father.
recruitment leads him to experience various types of training
from taking hard punches, knife fighting and the famous curving
bullet trick you see in the trailers. As he sets out to avenge
his father’s death and reclaim control over his own
life, Wesley discovers a new found strength inside of him
and this soon leads to a revelation about The Fraternity itself
which rocks the rest of its members.
is loosely based on Mark Millar’s graphic novel of the
same name. Unlike V for Vendetta, I have not read the graphic
novel and am unable to determine whether justice has been
done to the book. Still, if you like something that is cool
to watch, then WANTED is definitely it. There is blood galore,
several bullets meeting bullets head on scenes and you would
never guess it, exploding rats! WANTED also has a cool car
chase sequence, a cool jumping out of window sequence, a couple
of cool things one can do with guns and that is mainly it,
everything’s pretty cool.
leads are almost a stark reminiscent of The Matrix. Wesley
is Neo, Fox is Trinity and Sloan (Morgan Freeman) is Morpheus.
Matrix comparisons aside, this movie is very much a James
McAvoy vehicle. He probably relished playing the role, having
fun roughhousing and swearing his ass off as opposed to wearing
Victorian frocks or period outfits. No one else comes close
to this fellow on screen, everyone else, Jolie and Freeman
included are like wallpaper. They are nice to have around
but their purpose is well, limited. Mainly because the plot
is very paper thin and the supposed twist that happens is
more ho-hum than awe inspiring.
I had to guess what the movie’s box office odds are
like, I dare say it would be good despite the general flack
it will receive. Afterall, summer blockbusters are not really
about the plot or substance as much as it is about the big
bang, a whole lot of booms and a whole lot more of style.
(WANTED is like an expensive car that’s beautiful
on the outside but with a cheap and faulty engine on the inside)
Review by Mohamad Shaifulbahri