Writer: Sean Christensen
Starring: Taylor Lautner
Michael NyqvistRating: **
Release Date: 28th September, 2011
Oh dear; a good cast, an exciting story, action-packed fight scenes...what could go wrong. So many things is the answer.
One day when Nathan (Lautner) gets paired with his crush, Karen (Collins) get paired together for a class project, Nathan discovers something that rocks his world. He finds his baby picture on a missing child website, and after asking his parents and contacting the website owner, things go from bad to worse. It turns out his parents (Bello & Issacs) were hired to protect Nathan, as Nathan's biological father worked for the CIA and stole a list of corrupt CIA operatives from Victor Kozlow (Nyqvist). Victor then created the website to lure Nathan out and the plan works perfectly.
Taylor Lautner tries his hardest, but without the moody setting of Twilight and huge following he simply can't act. He had no emotional range, and absolutely no connection or chemistry with the script or other actors. Especially with Collins who is meant to be his love interest in the film. This pairing needed chemistry but there was none, none at all. I also found it confusing why he kept taking off his top, he is like the acting version of JLS, you know, can't do their job so flashes some abs and a cheeky nip; It was pointless. I also found it odd how a 17/18 year old can fight so well, and seem so unbothered about killing people. Now Collins may have a future in film, but the script wasn't great so she was let down, so I'll have to wait for her next role to really judge.
Maria Bello and Jason Isaacs were the best part of the film, they only feature in a small part, but their characters seem to have the most depth and story. I found myself wanting them to survive, and they also helped me feel something for Nathan. It's funny how other actors made me feel emotion for Lautner's character. Even Nathan's psychiatrist Dr. Bennett (Weaver) was unable to do much with the script, and Sigourney Weaver is amazing, to put it lightly. She is Nathan's mentor/protector through the film, but is unable to produce anything vaguely interesting or exciting as the script is pretty laughable.
Frank Burton (Molina), is the typical will he/won't he character. You spend the whole film trying to work out what side he is on, but I found myself not caring. Molina is normally a terrific actor, but when the film ended, I had actually forgotten the character and that Molina even featured. Finally Victor Koslow (Nyqvist), he is your typical, stereotypical Russian villain. Everything about him screams cliche, and by that point I stopped caring. I don't have much to say apart from, well done, you can do pantomime villain brilliantly.
It is such a brilliant cast, but unfortunately it doesn't work, apart from Bello and Isaacs who are watchable. I have to blame it on the writing, as that is the only thing that can explain such bad acting from such good actors (apart from Lautner). The directing is alright, but feels stale and reused. Even the action/fight scenes are dull and they don't happen often enough anyway. I reckon you should wait for the DVD release, or even better, the TV premiere, (although I bet the Twi-Hards go see it, and say it's oscar worthy).