Wanted Movie Review

13 07 2008

I just saw the movie “Wanted” today, and, lemme tell, this movie is turining some heads and it’s going to be one of the summer hits this year. This movie had plenty of action and a gore scale up there with “Saving Private Ryan”. This movie was loaded with twists that noone really expected at all, not even me. It had a great storyline that didn’t require much thought to understand. Trusty Wikipedia will give you a pretty good review of the entire plot (even though you guys want to hear my review more), but, it does leave out some big details and some little ones, but i HIGHLY suggest you go see this movie so that you can fully understand it’s greatness and see for yourself all the twists and turns i’ve talked to you about. CAUTION: THIS REVIEW WILL GIVE AWAY ALOT ABOUT THIS MOVIE, I WOULD CONSIDER THIS TO BE A SPOILER REVIEW!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wanted_(film)

The film opens with a man meeting with a ballistics expert, attempting to find out who made a particular bullet for a “competitor”. The conversation is interrupted by a sniper shooting the ballistics expert through the head from a nearby building. The man then dashes down the corridor and leaps through the window, shooting and killing his opponents in mid-flight. The man then receives a phone call from a man he calls Cross (Thomas Kretschmann). Cross tells the man that the snipers were decoys. Cross then fires a multi-stage bullet through the man’s head from the window of a house across town.

The narrative then shifts to Wesley Allan Gibson (James McAvoy). Wesley hates his job as an account manager, where he endures regular verbal abuse from his annoying boss. Wesley, who suffers from panic attacks, also correctly suspects that his best friend and co-worker is having an affair with his shrewish girlfriend.

One night, at the pharmacy, Wesley meets a mysterious woman who tells him that his father was an elite assassin who had been killed the day before. Wesley does not believe this; he tells the woman that his father abandoned him a week after his birth. At that moment, Cross appears, gun in hand. The woman opens fire on Cross. Wesley and the woman escape from the resulting shoot-out and have a wild car chase in the streets of Chicago.

Wesley is brought to the headquarters of The Fraternity, a thousand-year-old secret society of assassins. The group’s leader, Sloan (Morgan Freeman), formally introduces Gibson to Fox (Angelina Jolie) the woman from the night before, and invites him to follow in his father’s footsteps as an assassin. Sloan tests Wesley by making him shoot the wings off a fly. When Wesley refuses, a gun is put to his head, triggering a panic attack. Wesley somehow manages to shoot the wings off several flies.

Sloan explains that Wesley’s panic attacks are actually a very rare ability that when under stress causes his heart to beat at an excess of 400 beats per minute, sending abundant amounts of adrenaline into his bloodstream. This allows them to see and react faster than normal. Sloan also tells Wesley that he had inherited his father’s vast fortune. Sloan offers Wesley his father’s position within The Fraternity and gifts him with his father’s gun. Wesley, pulling the gun on Sloan and the others, refuses and leaves.

Wesley wakes up the the next day hoping that everything was a dream, but discovers his father’s gun (which he stashes in the toilet tank). He also discovers $3.6 million in his bank account. Wesley tells off his boss and quits his job, knocking out his friend’s teeth with his keyboard as he leaves. Fox, who has been waiting for him outside, gives him a ride back to the Fraternity headquarters – an unassuming textile mill.

Wesley immediately begins training with the Fraternity, determined to avenge his father. He is taught to shoot, fight with knives, and is desensitized to pain with regular beatings. Wesley is also taught to “curve” bullets by slinging his gun in such a way that the bullet travels in a curve rather than a straight line. The training is brutal, and is only endurable with the assistance of periodic medicinal baths that accelerate healing.

With his training completed, Wesley is given orders to kill people from The Loom of Fate, a loom that gives the names of the targets through a binary code hidden in the weaving of the threads. While on his first assignment, Wesley seems to refuse to kill his target. He recalls an earlier conversation with Fox in which he opined that it isn’t right to kill people without knowing anything about them or why they deserve to die. Fox then told him her life story. Fox’s father was a judge who was handling a sensitive case and the defendant had put a hit on him. One day a hired killer held the young girl at knife point as they waited for her father to return home. The killer then lit the father on fire as the young girl watched. He later branded his initials into her neck. Fox explained that the man who killed her father had been targeted by the Fraternity several weeks prior to the events of the story, but their assassin had failed to carry out his duty. Wesley bends a bullet trajectory to kill the target a moment after this recollection.

Wesley later returns to his apartment to retrieve his father’s gun. He encounters Cross upon leaving the building. Gunfire is exchanged and Wesley pursues Cross. Wesley accidentally kills a fellow Fraternity member, a Russian bomb-maker named the Exterminator, in the process. Cross takes this opportunity to “curve” a bullet into Wesley’s arm.

Wesley analyzes the bullet from his arm and traces its origins. He determines that it is the work of a renegade Fraternity member named Pekwarsky (Terrence Stamp). Sloan grants Wesley permission to personally carry out the kill order on Cross despite Fox’s protests. After Wesley leaves, Sloan hands Fox a new kill order. It has Wesley’s name on it.

Wesley and Fox travel to the Fraternity’s original base of operations in Europe. The two easily capture Pekwarsky and force him to take them to Cross. The meeting leads to a confrontation between Wesley and Cross on a moving train. Fox steals a car and crashes it into the train, eventually causing the train to derail when it reaches a bridge over a deep ravine. Wesley is about to fall into the ravine before Cross catches his hand, saving his life. Wesley unhesitatingly shoots him. Before Cross dies, he tells Wesley that he is his real father and that the Fraternity had been lying to him. Fox confirms the truth and explains that Wesley was recruited because he was the only person that Cross wouldn’t kill. Fox then tells Wesley about the kill order on him and raises her weapon to shoot him. Wesley, however, shoots the glass underneath him and plunges into the river below.

Wesley awakes in an apartment across the street from his former apartment. He finds Pekwarsky there. Upon inspecting the apartment, he discovers it belonged to his father, who had been monitoring him his whole life. Pekwarsky hands Wesley a loom weaving and tells him to decode it. Wesley is shocked to discover Sloan’s name in the weaving. Pekwarsky explains that Cross went rogue due to this discovery. Since then Sloan has used false kill orders to direct the Fraternity as mere contract killers. Wesley realizes that Cross had never actually tried to kill him in their previous confrontations; he had been assassinating Fraternity members to keep them away from Wesley. Pekwarsky departs after giving Wesley plane tickets, stating that his father wished him a life free of violence.

While exploring the apartment further, Wesley discovers a secret room containing all of his father’s weapons and maps. He even finds a supply of The Exterminator’s mini-bombs, realizing that The Exterminator had been working with his father. Wesley then devises a plan to take out Sloan and the Fraternity.

Wesley begins the first phase of his plan by filling a garbage truck with rats gorged on explosives-laced peanut butter, “arming” a number of the rats with the Exterminator’s mini-bombs. He then crashes the truck into the Fraternity compound and releases the rats. After the rats explode, he charges in, killing all the Fraternity members he encounters. Upon entering Sloan’s office, he finds himself surrounded by Fox and her fellow master assassins. Wesley tells them that Sloan is killing for profit by providing his killers with fraudulent kill orders. He then attempts to kill Sloan, but is disarmed by Fox.

Fox asks Sloan if this is true. Sloan then reveals that all of their names had come up in the weaving, and that he had merely acted to protect them. He then goes on to explain that if they truly believe in the code then they should all commit suicide right where they stand. Otherwise, they should kill Wesley. The other assassins decide to kill Wesley, but Fox turns on her fellow assassins. She “curves” a bullet to kill the assassins who had been standing in a circle, including herself. Sloan escapes.

Wesley, penniless once more, does not know what to do with himself. While Wesley provides a voice-over, the audience sees a young man sitting in front of a computer in a cubicle much like Wesley did at the beginning of the film. The man types the name “Wesley Gibson” into Google and searches for it but does not have any results, as in the beginning of the film. Sloan appears and points a gun at the man’s head. At that moment, the man turns around and is revealed to be a decoy. Wesley, who is actually several miles away, then shoots Sloan in the head from the same window his father killed from at the beginning of the movie.

The movie ends with Wesley giving an overview of his last six weeks as an assassin: “What the fuck have you done lately?”

Again, this review does not explain everything about the film. I, again, suggest that you go and see the movie because it is amazing even if you read this.

-Shadow

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