Based on a book by Vince Flynn, American Assassin is a 2017 action thriller directed by Michael Cuesta.
After his fiancée is murdered in a terrorist attack, Mitch Rapp (Dylan O’Brien) has become obsessed with revenge, engaging in relentless martial arts and weapons training. Having entered the world of fundamentalist terrorism in pursuit of that revenge, until he is recruited by a black ops element of the CIA.
Michael Keaton stars as the seasoned veteran training Stan Hurley as they face an emerging threat from ‘Ghost’ (Taylor Kitsch) a former trainee of Hurley that has gone rogue.
I’ve actually read this book. And I was optimistic about the opportunity given the source material.
The disappointment that I took from this film was material. With the exception of Keaton and Kitsch, it is filled with lacklustre performance and the lead role is remarkably uncharismatic.
Keaton does what he can, and Kitsch makes for an interesting villain at times, although I cant help think he would have been better placed as Rapp in the first place.
The script quickly works through the training element of the story, which actually sets up a lot of the tension in the book. Without this, the relationship between Rapp and Hurley is left undeveloped and there is little to build on from this.
Its a poor translation of solid source material that has nothing to say, and little to offer. I would avoid at all costs. The book is a prequel as part of a series that included 13 other stories by Flynn. If anymore are to be made into films, some significant changes are required.
It doesnt hold your attention and its two hours I would rather just have back.