Directed by Richard Hughes.
With Antonio Banderas, Alexis Ren, Mojean Aria, Zolee Griggs, Aaron Cohen, 2 Chainz, Kate Bosworth, Mark Rhino Smith, Luke Bouchier, Christos Vasilopoulos, Kostas Sommer, Kika Georgiou, Vivian Milkova and Natalie Burn.
An enforcer must sacrifice everything to save a young girl he’s befriended from cybersex trafficking.
Antonio Banderas is Cuda, a gangster with a heart of gold in Richard Hughes The executor. It doesn’t necessarily start out that way, enlisting yard fighter Stray (Mojean Aria, capable of giving the clinch brawls and MMA-style takedowns/submissions has an authentic feel to it that might be the only decent thing about of action here) for a fast-paced job where the titular enforcer demonstrates his murderous cruelty. At the end of the night, Cuda puts a bullet in someone’s head, while the physically well-behaved Stray is unprofessional and expresses no interest in learning to drive himself, which leads them to separate.
Cuda’s daughter, Lola (Vivian Milkova), is about to turn 16 but understandably wants nothing to do with her father, given that she has reached an age where she knows what he is doing in life. Likewise, Cuda is also estranged from his wife. It’s hard to blame Lola for not wanting this career criminal to show up at school and try to redeem love with dirty money (literally blood money) and try to plan a party upcoming birthday. Simultaneously, Stray pursues a new romantic adventure with nightclub worker Lexus (Alexis Ren), who happens to be partnered with Cuda’s boss Estelle (Kate Bosworth).
Feeling down on the inside, less than 24 hours away from killing someone in cold blood, Cuda wanders around Miami, where he meets 15-year-old runaway shoplifter Billie (Zolee Griggs). to a difficult life and without a family. Cuda pulls out another big stack of cash and puts him in a motel room, under the impression that this might be his chance to redeem himself (especially since his family wants nothing to do with him. Roughly two days later, he visits to check on her, finding no one there and signs of a kidnapping fight.
As a result, Cuda goes on a rampage to get to the bottom of the situation, reconnecting with Stray, who desperately wants more criminal work and pleads to take constructive criticism, mostly because he wants to make a living and support his new little girl. friend. . And so begins the repetition of hitting one hotbed of illegal activity after another to piece together a trail. Along the way, we’re treated to painfully generic dialogue about revenge, regret, and forgiveness (W. Peter Iliff’s screenplay is a clunker at every step).
The most frustrating is that The executor, who already doesn’t do much with any of these characters and their quickly established dynamics, arrives at a cybersex trafficking reveal that’s so glossed over and used only for contrived plotting that the movie comes across as fringe circles that believe that these rings exist around every corner. There is no attempt to explore how and why these operations are built and maintained (outside of the money) or to focus on the victims beyond something to save; they are nothing more than a tool of redemption.
Whether The executor works successfully as a solid action movie, the above may not be so bad. However, the script largely tells a dramatic story with Cuda drastically changing his personality on the fly. The reaction to the crisis he faces over being kicked out of his family’s life is normal, but this haste in which he’s willing to sacrifice his life to redeem himself by rescuing a kidnapped teenage girl feels disingenuous.
It also doesn’t help that there are glaring production issues (day changes to night for no reason between the scenes of Cuda and Billie having dinner after the meeting, lines have been dubbed into English but still contain subtitles that aren’t even the correct spoken words). Then there’s the final reveal, which is a lame attempt at shock value.
Whenever Mojean Aria gets into bare-knuckle fights with generic henchmen, The executor is tolerable. Other than that, it’s a rushed, cliched mess.
Scintillating Myth Rating – Movie: ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★
Robert Kojder is a member of the Chicago Film Critics Association and the Critics Choice Association. He is also the editor of Flickering Myth Reviews. Check here for new reviews, follow my Twitter Where Letter boxor email me at MetalGearSolid719@gmail.com