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March 6, 2011

The Mechanic (2011) Review

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Jason Statham has starred in a ton of action movies lately. Some have been great, others have been disappointing, but he always seems to put on a good show. When I heard about his new movie, “The Mechanic”, I figured it would be very similar to the others. Statham would play the typical hot headed killer who shoots first and asks questions later. I was totally shocked when I saw the movie.

Jason Statham plays Arthur Bishop, a professional hit man. Bishop is not a sloppy hit man who shoots first and asks questions later. Rather, he is an efficient killer for hire who plans his every move in advance, down to the smallest detail. He is the best in the world at what he does, and always leaves the scene of a crime without a trace.

When Bishop’s mentor and teacher, Harry McKenna (played by Donald Sutherland) is killed in a planned hit, Statham takes Harry’s son Steve (played by Ben Foster) under his wing to teach him to be an efficient professional hit man. Steve is a wild card who learns the art quickly, but does things his own way. Unlike Bishop, Steve often gets sloppy with his work and this makes Bishops’ bosses unhappy. The result is an action packed movie with plenty of twists and turns.

Jason Statham plays his classic role. A dark, stoic hero that fears no one and beats the hell out of everyone who stands in his path. He rarely shows emotions, other than anger, yet in this film he manages to show that he cares for certain individuals without vocalizing it. There is not much character development, and we do not know much about Bishop’s past, other than the plot inferences that he was very close with Steve’s father.

Ben Foster does a great job of playing Steve, who is a hot headed kid who has just lost his father. Steve is hell bent on revenge, and Foster does a great job of playing a disturbed young man who is the polar opposite of Statham, he shoots first and asks questions after. The relationship dynamic and personality differences between Foster and Statham’s characters are portrayed well, and are vital to the story line.

There are no Oscar award winning performances here. No romance, and not much comedic relief. If you are looking for any of those things, then the Mechanic is not for you. However, if you are an action fan, or just enjoy seeing Jason Statham beat people up in a violent fashion, then check out the Mechanic.

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