Movie Review: Haywire

Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Synopsis: Mallory Kane is a highly trained operative who works for a government security contractor in the dirtiest, most dangerous corners of the world. After successfully freeing a Chinese journalist held hostage, she is double crossed and left for dead by someone close to her in her own agency. Suddenly the target of skilled assassins who know her every move, Mallory must find the truth in order to stay alive. Using her black-ops military training, she devises an ingenious - and dangerous - trap. But when things go haywire, Mallory realizes she'll be killed in the blink of an eye unless she finds a way to turn the tables on her ruthless adversary.
Starring: Gina Carano, Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas, Ewan McGregor, Channing Tatum, Bill Paxton, Michael Fassbender, Michael Angarano
Directed by: Steven Soderbergh
U.S. Rating: R

The first time I saw the official trailer for Haywire, I had mixed thoughts. First, I believed it looked like a pretty good action film but, in the other way, I didn't think it could be that good having the lead role perfomed by someone that is not an actress, but a mixed Martial Arts champ and former American Gladiator, Gina Carano. The cast looked pretty impressive, having Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas, Ewan McGregor, Channing Tatum, Michael Fassbender and Michael Angarano, among others, but I was convinced Gina wouldn't deliver the acting performance expected for a thriller like this one, directed by one of my favorite directors.

My fears inmediately disappeared after watching the first scene. I mean, she wasn't Meryl Streep! Right? Or at least at the same acting performance level Angelina Jolie delivered in Salt, but at least, I can say that it was entertaining and far from being a cheap acting performance. I think that Steven Soderbergh knew it and did a great job on his direction and most important, the supporting cast helped the film to be really enjoyable.

One thing I must say, even though, the plot didn't leave any open door leading the idea of a future sequel, I would ask director Steven Soderbergh to leave Mallory Kane, her special skills, training and secret works end with this film. I believe it wasn't a strong film to lead a future sequel. Salt was an amazing plot that was actually prepared to have a future sequel, performed by a lead role with a fantastic acting performance experience in action roles also.

In case you're planning to watch the film and want to know more about it, here's the plot:

The film starts when Mallory Kane enters a diner in Upstate New York, sits and just waits. Few minutes later, Aaron arrives and joins her. After a short conversation about their employer, Aaron orders Mallory to get in his car. She refuses, and they fight, with Aaron nearly capturing Mallory before the intervention of Scott, a customer in the diner, allows Mallory to break Aaron's arm, knock him unconscious, and escape with Scott in Scott's car.

Mallory tells Scott that both she and Aaron are contractors with a private firm that is employed by the American government for covert operation assignments. One week before, at a meeting among government agent Coblenz, his contact, Rodrigo, and the firm's director (and Mallory's ex-boyfriend) Kenneth, the firm was hired to rescue Jiang, who is being held in Barcelona. Mallory and her team, which includes Aaron, succeed in rescuing Jiang and delivering him to Rodrigo.

Shortly thereafter, Mallory is approached by Kenneth, who insists she undertake what he claims is an easy assignment: pose as the wife of British agent Paul during a mission in Dublin. Mallory agrees and accompanies Paul to a party at Russborough House, where they meet with his contact, Studer (Mathieu Kassovitz). Paul meets with Studer again as Mallory watches from afar. She sees Paul go into a barn, and after he leaves she enters it to find Jiang dead, clutching in his hand a brooch which Kenneth required her to wear as a recognition signal for her initial contact with Paul.

Mallory realizes she has been set up and returns to her hotel room, where she is attacked by Paul. They fight, Mallory gets the upper hand and shoots Paul dead. Mallory calls Kenneth from Paul's phone. As Kenneth picks up the phone, he asks "is the divorce final?" Mallory doesn't answer, and Kenneth realizes that Mallory is still alive and now knows about the set-up. As Mallory leaves her hotel, a SWAT team appears to arrest her but she escapes after a chase, and manages to enter the United States and reach the diner, where she meets Scott.

Mallory calls Coblenz who tells her that he has had suspicions about Kenneth for some time. Coblenz then contacts Kenneth and tells him to inform Mallory's father, John Kane (who already knows of his daughter's occupation), of her crimes. Meanwhile, on the road, Mallory and Scott are chased by the police and hit a tree after a deer runs into Scott's car. They are both arrested, but soon the convoy is ambushed by assassins sent by Kenneth. Mallory escapes, kills the assassins, and releases Scott. She gives him a number to call for protection and leaves to meet with her father.

Mallory reaches her father's house in New Mexico before Kenneth, Aaron, and two additional men arrive to interrogate John on his daughter's whereabouts. Aaron starts to realize that Mallory might have been set up and tries to press Kenneth for the truth, but Kenneth kills Aaron as Mallory takes out Kenneth's men.

Mallory chases Kenneth, but he escapes. The following day Mallory meets with Coblenz, who reveals that he ordered Kenneth to contact Mallory's father so she could kill him there. Mallory asks Coblenz to fix things with Scott, which he promises to do. Coblens also informs Mallory of Kenneth's location. Before Mallory leaves, Coblenz offers her a government job but she replies only that she'll let him know, after she finds Kenneth.

In Mexico, Mallory confronts Kenneth at the beach and they fight. Kenneth tries to escape, but gets his foot jammed between two rocks. Kenneth reveals that Jiang was a journalist who had written a series of articles exposing Studer's crimes. Knowing that Mallory planned to leave his firm, Kenneth arranged for her to rescue Jiang and deliver him to Rodrigo, who then delivered him to Studer, who killed him. Kenneth then framed Mallory, planning to cut all ties that could lead to him by convincing Paul that Mallory was a double agent whom he should kill. Mallory leaves Kenneth to drown in the incoming tide for his betrayal.

Rodrigo is enjoying his "retirement" in Majorca. After his female companion is called away, Mallory descends onto the balcony behind him. When Rodrigo sees Mallory, his response is simply, "Shit", and the film ends.

Source: Wikipedia

I would rate this movie with a 2.5/5

Have you watched the film? What did you like or dislike from this movie? What would you rate this movie? Share with us your thoughts!

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