Killer Elite


In 1980, a sheik in Oman (played by Rodney Afif) holds Hunter (played by Robert De Niro) hostage until Danny Bryce (played by Jason Statham) arrives to accept a $6 million contract to assassinate British Special Forces personnel who killed his three sons during the Dhofar Rebellion, when the county was threatened by a Communist insurgency. As a professional assassin, he takes the job but is soon caught up in intrigue. The British government’s larger agenda is to ensure that Oman supplies Britain with oil. Meanwhile, business executives, retired members of Special Forces, want to protect their former comrades, assigning Spike (played by Clive Owen) to stop Bryce. The executives are known as “feather men” because they don’t want to “lay a feather” on Bryce, leaving the dirty work to Spike. Thus, when Bryce embarks on a killing spree, he jeopardizes other agendas. Soon, Bryce is pursuer and pursued, performing feats that resemble those of Jackie Chan without the humor. Although the story is loosely based on Sir Ranulph Fiennes’s exposé in The Feather Men (1993), director Gary McKendry provides much boring and redundant non-stop violence in the film, presumably as an attempt to portray Statham as a superhero. The exposé is British involvement, still denied by the London government, in suppressing the Communist insurgents in Oman, but the surfeit of violence eclipses the message.  MH

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