The Killer 2023 DUAL 1080p WEB-DL x265

movieRNovember 10, 2023
After a fateful near-miss, an assassin battles his employers, and himself, on an international manhunt he insists isn't personal.
IMDb Rating
1h 58min
Top Review

The definition of a good thriller is that the plot should be slick and smart. That means the film is edited in such a way that it follows the narrative closely without a lot of extra fluff. It also means all the characters in the story act like real human beings and make logical decisions. One thing I have found about David Fincher is that he has OCD when it comes to details. The details are presented in an intelligent fashion. In this film, the details can be straight forward or logical when it comes to the plot. Fincher tells the story through cutaways, insert shots showing the little details that explain our main character's actions. For example, early on when the Killer (who remains unnamed) loads a magazine into his gun, it takes no less than three cutaways to accomplish this. The opening act has a voyeuristic perspective, akin to "Rear Window" as we slowly get into the Killer's head through voiceover. The first act has an almost hypnotic quality as we study his situation, vigilantly maintaining a stakeout over several days, waiting for a mark. Filmmakers need to be careful when using voiceover, as it sometimes can be a conceit. Usually you try to tell the story through visuals. Here, the majority of the voiceover remains in the first act. Then through the rest of the film, bits we heard earlier are repeated at key moments during the film. My reaction is that these extra VO drops were unnecessary, but also act as a disruption. His train of thought in these moments is confronted with an unanticipated setback. Finchers adds a couple touches of humour. I have stated in another review how important it is to find the right amount of humour to an otherwise serious drama. Too little and the drama starts to get stiff. Too much, and you are being removed from the reality of the situation. Fincher keeps the humour to a minimum, compared to one of his peers, Steven Soderbergh. Soderberg excels in this genre, with films like "Out of Sight" and "Haywire". The latter also includes Michael Fassbinder, the pro/antagonist in this film. All the supporting characters this film are almost cameos, but all are excellent. The story remains focused on the Killer, never really revealing the greater plot, or what to anticipate as we follow the Killer through his agenda. But again, this is smart scriptwriting because it respects the audience's intelligence, who can easily fill in the blanks. Another staple of the Thriller genre is globe-hopping, James Bond style. The film is constantly on the move, as our main character travels from one airport to another. It is also adds the extra element of realism by shooting mostly on location (save for some interiors). The moments of action are well done. There are "Bourne" like moments with the action scenes, but not as frequent. The film, because it is a singularly focused story about the Killer and a job gone wrong, has a generally small scope. The actions of the Killer are pretty straightforward, and there are no real twists. I appreciated that lack of multiple subplots, too many scripts try to overachieve and can become confusing by throwing too many side characters or too many twists. The slim story could be a drawback if expectations were higher. However, Fincher is very skilled at drawing you into the workings of clandestine activities with his meticulous cutaways (sometimes he'll shoot 70 takes to get a shot right). This precision matches the Killer's precision in resolving his issues. There is only one gimmick that made me groan. Everytime the Killer presents and ID at an airport or rental car place, we see his alias is the name of a well known sitcom character. This is a cute moment of humour, but in reality would be a very stupid thing for our smart assassin. One doesn't even need to be of the 70s generation to recognise these well known character names (Sam Malone, Bob Hartly, Felix Unger, Archibald Bunker, etc,). Reruns of these TV shows run on digital side channels and on streaming services, so younger generations would also be able to recognise these names. If there is a security agency (like Interpol) looking for him, once they link a sitcom character's name to the Killer, they can easily search for other fictional sitcom characters to try and track him. Ultimately, I sat through this procedural with rapt attention, with the tight editing and intriguing spycraft providing the momentum. With the opening titles resembling the quick montage of action shots and graphics like "Mission Impossible", it set expectations appropriately. One of the better thrillers made recently, it rises above other movies like "Equalizer 3" (which left me wanting). Not as big in scope and story as "Fight Club" or "Zodiac", but entertaining as "Se7en" and his outstanding TV series "Mindhunter". 7 out of 10.

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Cast Overview
  • Michael Fassbender
  • Tilda Swinton
  • Charles Parnell
File Size
1.2 GB
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