It’s no news that the two fastest talking mouths in Hollywood got together make a movie. Ryan Reynolds (Deadpool), is a bodyguard hired to protect a hitman, Samuel L. Jackson (The Hateful Eight), who has to testify against a cruel dictator at the International Criminal Court. Reynolds practically talked my ears off in Deadpool and Jackson was just as annoying in The Hateful Eight. So your guess is good as mine the craziness the two got up to this film ‘The Hitman’s Bodyguard’.
The script, acquired by David Ellison‘s Skydance Media in May 2011, was among the top 2011 Black List of unproduced screenplay. And it must have been some script because though originally intended as a drama, producers spent two weeks of ‘non-stop’ writing to remake it into a comedy just some weeks to filming, rather than simply just write a comedy script.
Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson and Gary Oldman were cast in November 4, 2015. Oldman as Vladislav Dukhovich, the ruthless ruler of Belarus. It was announced that Jeff Wadlow would direct for Millennium Films. By February 23, 2016, Élodie Yung was cast as Amelia Roussel, a greenhorn agent who is Bryce’s estranged ex-girlfriend, and Salma Hayek as Sonia, Kincaid’s imprisoned, psychotic wife. By March 9, 2016, Wadlow was out of the directing chair and Patrick Hughes signed on for the job. Principal photography began on April 2, 2016, in London, Amsterdam and Sofia
The Hitman’s Bodyguard was released in the United States on August 18, 2017, and as of September 13, 2017, it had grossed $66.4 million in the United States and Canada and $60.2 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $126.6 million, against a production budget of $30 million. Not bad, right?
In North America, The Hitman’s Bodyguard opened alongside Logan Lucky, and was projected to gross $17–20 million from 3,350 theaters in its opening weekend. It made $8 million on its first day and went on to open to $21.6 million, topping the box office.
By its second weekend The Hitman’s Bodyguard made $10.2 million, finishing first at the box office in what was the combined lowest-grossing weekend since September 2001. It made another $10.2 million the following weekend, becoming the 3rd film of 2017 to finish top of the box office for three straight weeks. It was again involved in a historically low weekend over the four-day Labor Day weekend, as it was the worst combined holiday weekend since 1998.
Now unto what the Vultures… sorry, Critics had to say about the film. The Hitman’s Bodyguard received mixed reviews, with critics praising Reynolds and Jackson’s chemistry but criticizing the clichéd plot and execution.
On the Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 38% based on reviews from 163 critics, and an average rating of 5.1/10. The critical consensus being, “The Hitman’s Bodyguard coasts on Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds’ banter—but doesn’t get enough mileage to power past an overabundance of action-comedy clichés.” On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating to reviews, the film has a weighted average score 47 out of 100, based on reviews from 42 critics, indicating “mixed or average reviews”. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of “B+” on an A+ to F scale.
Peter Debruge of Variety gave the film a positive review and called it a pleasant late-summer surprise, writing: “The Hitman’s Bodyguard is about as close to a live-action cartoon as you’re likely to get this year…That’s not a style that works much of the time…but in the hands of The Expendables 3 helmer Patrick Hughes—and more importantly, owing to the chemistry of stars Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds—it makes for a delightfully ridiculous screwball action comedy.”
Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, praised the cast, giving it 2 stars out of 4 and wrote, “Reynolds and Jackson make this summer lunacy go down easy with their banter and bullet-dodging skills. They’re the only reason that The Hitman’s Bodyguard doesn’t completely sink into the generic quicksand from whence it came.”
And what’s your friendly neighbourhood Jollyhood’s take? That The Hitman’s Bodyguard’s craziness makes an enjoyable summer flick. Reynolds and Jackson’s chemistry and lunatic banter is just good enough to cover up supposed flaws like a cliché plot. So, it’s a must match people!
As usual, looking forward to your thoughts. Remember you can send your articles, with name and phone number to firstname.lastname@example.org, if you wanna be a contributor to the blog. Have a blast this weekend, folks and play safe. Cheerios!