Sunday 25 May 2014

Review: Hummingbird

World of Blackout Catch-up Review

Humingbird Poster

Humingbird (or Redemption, depending on where you are in the world)
Cert: 15 / 96 mins / Dir. Steven Knight

The general rule of thumb, with Jason Statham movies, is that if he uses his Cockney accent, the film can range from anywhere to alright to quite good, whereas if he's gruffing his way through his nondescript American accent, the range is limited between substandard and kill me now. In Steven Knight's Hummingbird, The Stath™ is in full on Brit-tastic mode as a Troubled™ Iraq war veteran Joey Smith (/Jones), and the film sits accordingly in the somewhere between alright and quite good bracket.

You've got to hand it to screenwriter Steven (Locke) Knight, in that he didn't get too bogged down with the issues of post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse and human trafficking. Instead, he seemed to concentrate on Making A Jason Statham Movie, and in that respect Hummingbird is as good as it can be. It's not that The Stath™ completely rescues a mechanically written, second draft of a screenplay, but it certainly becomes more forgivable with him heading the charge. Any character who isn't being played by Jason or Agata Buzek is purely one dimensional (and to be fair, even the leads barely squeeze into two dimensions), and the plot seems to be driven more by luck and coincidence than any real effort on Knight's part.

But, what you see is what you get, and Joey's climactic act of rooftop vengeance at least got a hearty laugh from everyone in the room. Hummingbird may not be a great film, but it's a passable enough Jason Statham film, and that counts for a lot with me.

Is the trailer representative of the film?
Yeah. Yeah, it is.

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
Not quite.

Buy, pay to rent, or wait until it's on for free?
Pay-to-rent, tops.

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?
I won't avoid it, but it's unlikely I'll seek it out.

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?
I didn't hear one, but it wouldn't surprise me.

And because you won't be happy until I've given it a score...

And my question for YOU is…
If you were going to be out of your central London flat from February until October, would you really arm your answerphone with that information to tell everyone who phones your landline?

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a 'catch-up' review. I watched this film at home, not at the cinema. I saw the trailer for this at the cinema, and I would have seen the film there too, but they didn't/couldn't show it. So now iTunes, Amazon, Netflix and Blockbuster get to reap the rewards of my local's advance-advertising, and I'm sure they're delighted. Now you may say "oh come on, they can't show everything down there", and that would be a valid point if they didn't do things like running Taken 2 for six weeks. Was it that successful? No, I don't think so. Twilight? Batman? Les Mis? Sure, go for it; if they're pulling the punters in then keep making that money. But Taken 2? I ask you. Anyway, this is essentially a DVD review, but still of a new(ish) film. There. I'm glad that's sorted.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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