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Finchers The Killer

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  • Finchers The Killer

    I was scrolling through Netflix yesterday and this was just there. I don't recall a cinema release, so I'm assuming it was made for the platform.

    Anyway, what have we got here. It's a surprisingly stripped back film for Fincher. Not a huge amount of of a story, a hit man fluffs a job, puts himself in the cross-hairs, and then goes on a short revenge spree.

    There's a monk-ish restraint to this film. It never gives you any information you don't need. Not a lot of dialogue. In that it is definitely taking inspiration from old French noir killer movies like Le Samourai. There's a lot of Le Samourai about this actually.

    it has a very digital look to it. Fincher insists on using Red cameras. After this I feel he might want to have a look at an Arri. The harsh digital look on the night time scenes is enough to be distracting.

    overall, not sure I'll watch it again. It was refreshing to see a small movie out of Hollywood. It was under 2 hours, which was still too long, but thank fuck it wasn't 3.

    Hard to put my finger on why I remained ungripped given this sort of thing is in my wheelhouse. I might put it down to Fassbenders lead. He's as restrained as the rest of the film. My girlfriend said he should have been played by Gosling, whos made a side line in playing dudes who dont talk, which I immediately shot down. Gosling, like Delon, brings a different amount of charisma to things and would immediately make our lead likeable and someone we really want to succeed. I don't think Fincher wanted that. He wanted an actual blank not a cool guy playing a blank.

    But there's not much fun following a blank.
    "Never let the fact that they are doing it wrong stop you from doing it right." Hyman Mandell.

  • #2
    I saw this in the theatre last week so it did get a release. I enjoyed it as it is very much up my alley but resembled Haywire so closely I found it a bit distracting. Also, I hate The Smiths.

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    • #3
      I like this somewhat. It was much better then your average Netflix film, but it was also very unoriginal. I kept feeling like I had seen this film before. Not Finchers best work in any way, but still decent enough for me to keep interested. I will probably never feel the need to see this again though.
      "No presh from the Dresh!"

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      • #4
        “I don't give a f*ck” the title character pronounces early on in David Fincher's latest. Michael Fassbender is a hired assassin who is on a stakeout in Paris waiting for his target when he narrates that phrase. Most of the character's words are delivered via inner monologue, usually accompanied with songs by The Smiths. The Killer is never given a proper alias. Amusingly, he adopts the names of popular vintage TV characters as his pseudonyms.

        Fassbender's The Killer is from a long line of cinematic hitmen who take a philosophical, sometimes existential, approach to their work form Melville's LE SAMOURAI (and LE DOULOS) to Suzuki's BRANDED TO KILL to Corbijn's THE AMERICAN. Their profession is their life, and the mission its purpose.

        When The Killer crosses his employers it becomes a cat and mouse pursuit between contract executioner and his contractors. The chase takes The Killer from France to the Dominican Republic to various U.S. cities. Most of his encounters are brief with only Tilda Swinton and Arliss Howard having much of an opportunity to interact. The Killer doesn't say much, but he does make a good point early on as to how it's become more and more difficult to not be seen in today's world because of all the high tech surveillance equipment in everyone's daily lives (this is not to say, that he isn't more than capable of using electronics to his advantage). The most interest aspect of the narration is that it often disconnects from The Killer's actual actions.

        Andrew Kevin Walker's screenplay (adapted from a work by Alexis Nolent & Luc Jacamon) is appropriately lean and mean. Fincher directs with his usual precision. Eric Messerschmidt's slick camera work melds well with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' slinky score. There aren't many surprises and the finale doesn't lift the material even as it can be read as a not so thinly veiled symbol of modern capitalism. Still, for what it is, THE KILLER is a solid action thriller. Any deeper messages inferred are mainly par for the course. Fincher's intense focus is on The Killer's tactics.



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