22 Miles (2018) - Coitus interruptus - 6/10 (11/09/18)
Be warned that if you watch this movie, you won't get a proper conclusion. The film doesn't have a true climax and ends on several cliffhangers. A sequel has already been announced as well as a spin-off web series. If you want to watch a movie with a coherent exposition, intense rising action, concise climax, gripping falling action and satisfactory resolution, you shouldn't watch this movie at all. I actually felt cheated watching this film because Mile 22 is rather like a television pilot than a genuine standalone movie.
That isn't the only thing that is wrong with this flick. Mile 22 actually has a decent plot and a little twist but instead of developing this potential, the writers threw everything overboard. The twist is revealed very early in the movie, hence depriving the film from a real climax. In addition to this, the film chaotically meanders from scenes in the present to scenes in the past which is particularly confusing in the first few minutes. The perspectives also change as we follow friends and foes alike without any coherence. The shaky cameras make this film even harder to digest. The structure of this movie is also quite strange, since the first half focuses on a massive number of dialogues with the exception of the intriguing opening ten minutes while the second half offers non-stop action sequences. The plot is basically quite simple but is told so chaotically that it ironically fits the movie: American intelligence officers need to escort a potential double agent with important information to an airport in Indonesia but local law enforcers as well as Russian terrorists are trying to prevent this by any means necessary. The whole film feels disjointed, messy and unfocused.
One thing that saves this movie from being below average are the great action scenes in the second half. Iko Uwais' skills alone are worth watching the film alone as he uses feet, hands and even his head to fight relentlessly while also using authentic weapons as well as improvised weapons such as chairs, tables and windows. Mark Wahlberg also plays some tough action scenes, handling his weapons fearlessly and skillfully to find a way out of the most challenging situations. His female sidekick played by Lauren Cohan has to fight for her life several times and performs her role with energetic despair. Among wolves in wolves' clothing, she is the character viewers might sympathize with most.
Another positive element are the characters that have some depth even though this movie only scratches on the surface of this potential. Mark Wahlberg plays a grumpy sociopath who constantly plays with fire. Lauren Cohan incarnates a divorced mother with anger management issues. Iko Uwais convinces in the role of a sinister, quiet and intelligent agent who has numerous hidden agendas. The side characters remain more superficial but interesting nonetheless for an action movie, especially since there are some intriguing cameos by well-known household names of the genre.
The movie feels aborted when the credits start rolling after less than ninety minutes. Several questions remain unanswered. The film doesn't offer a proper resolution to the events that were meticulously prepared over the course of about eighty-five minutes. You will leave the cinema scratching your head and wondering whether you have just experienced ninety minutes that were wasted or well-spent. Mile 22 is an entertaining film and especially the second half will please to those who like films in the key of The Raid or The Villainess. On the other side, it's a chaotic, inconclusive and simply stated unfinished mess of a movie. If you care for a story, I would suggest you to avoid this movie altogether. If you just want to see Iko Uwais, Mark Wahlberg, Lauren Cohan and their sidekicks kicking ass for about forty-five minutes, go ahead and enjoy yourself.« Forensic Files: a fascinating true crime seriesSlender Man (2018) - Better than its reputation - 6/10 (12/09/18) »