Business rating: 1.5 / 5 stars (One-and-a-half stars)
Star cast: Gina Carano, Channing Tatum, Michael Fassbender, Ewan McGregor, Antonio Banderas, Michael Douglas.
Plot: Mallory (Gina Carano) is a highly skilled freelance secret operative who is betrayed after a mission in Barcelona. She goes rogue to get to the depth of the matter.
What’s Good: The engaging and exciting script; the unconventional but well-choreographed fight scenes; Gina Carano as the leading lady.
What’s Bad: The intermittently slow pace of the film; the absence of a coherent explanation as to what is happening in the first half of the drama.
Verdict: Haywire makes for an intriguing and interesting watch.
Loo break: None.
Watch or Not?: Watch it for the raw fight scenes and Steven Soderbergh’s direction.
Aardman Animations and Sony Pictures Animation’s Arthur Christmas begins with Santa Claus and his elves delivering billions of gifts to kids all over the world with clockwork precision. While Santa himself is a bit lost in the proceedings, it’s his eldest son, Steve, who looks after the gargantuan logistics and has a backup plan for everything.
Irish Film Board, Relativity Media and Tanweer Films’ Haywire is an action thriller about a female covert operations specialist who goes rogue when the people she trusts double-cross her.
An on-the-edge girl (Gina Carano) meets a man (Channing Tatum) at a café. Within minutes, she is attacked by him. In the ensuing fight, the girl shows who’s better and does not hesitate to break a few bones in the brutal fight. Taking a surprised youngster in the café hostage at gun-point, the girl escapes with the former in his car. The stranger in the car is Scott (Michael Angarano) while the macho-girl introduces herself as Mallory Kane. She tells Scott her story, asking him to remember the finer details.
Mallory is a highly-skilled security operative, who worked for a private agency which was contracted by the government to rescue a Chinese journalist in Barcelona. After Mallory successfully completed the job with a team of operatives – which included her attacker at the café – she handed the journalist over to Rodrigo (Antonio Banderas), a government agent.
After that, her employer, Kenneth (Ewan McGregor), had paid her a surprise visit, and had requested her to go on another secret mission. On the second mission, Mallory was expected to be eye-candy on the side of a freelance contractor, Paul (Michael Fassbender), who was liaising with a Frenchman. Alert as a cat, Mallory suspected that something fishy was happening. Her suspicions were confirmed when she found the dead body of the Chinese journalist, whom she had rescued a few days before.
Cautiously, Mallory had proceeded back to her hotel room where Paul had attacked her. In the ensuing fight, she had killed Paul. She had then decided to get off the grid completely and get to the depth of the matter. She could confide only in her father (Bill Paxton). To get back to the US, she had made a deal with a government agent, Coblenz (Michael Douglas), who had hired her employer to do the Chinese job in the first place. All this had happened before she was attacked in the café.
What happens next? Is Mallory able to extract her revenge? What, after all, is the conspiracy against her? Who all – from among her employer, the government and her colleagues – are involved in it?
Haywire Review: Script Analysis
Lem Dobbs’ story is unusual and interesting insofar as the shenanigans of the secret world of contract security operatives is concerned. The screenplay, also penned by Dobbs, reveals the details of the plot one by one and this keeps the audience engaged to an extent. However, viewers who are used to films that make their point upfront might find the drama a little boring, at least in the initial few reels.
The screenplay provides ample scope for some wonderfully executed action sequences – including many brutal hand-to-hand fights – which are a highlight.
Haywire Review: Star Performances
Gina Carano, who is a mixed martial arts champion in real life, deserves full marks for her performance. She might seem to falter in a couple of scenes as an actor but she more than makes it up with her quick punches and kicks, which are aplenty. Michael Fassbender delivers a very good performance. Ewan McGregor is alright. Michael Angarano looks suitably scared as Mallory’s unwilling partner-in-crime. Antonio Banderas is stylish in a small role. Michael Douglas and Bill Paxton fill the bill. Others offer good support.
Haywire Review: Direction & Technical Aspects
Steven Soderbergh’s direction is very good. He weaves the narration in a very interesting manner and makes the film a compelling watch for the most part. His cinematography brings the best out of the action scenes. David Holmes’ background score is fine.
Haywire Review: The Last Word
On the whole, Haywire is a good action fare which excites the viewers’ brain cells. However, the lack of face value and lack of publicity means that the film will go almost unnoticed in India.
Haywire released in India on January 26, 2012.