March 3, 2013

Filthy Review - 'Interview with a Hitman'

Interview with a Hitman (2012)

Review by Jude Felton

If you had told me 25 years ago that Luke Goss’ band Bros would disappear from sight, I would have been a happy man, not to mention correct. However, if you had told me that he would go on to have a relatively successful acting career, I would have laughed and told you to seek psychiatric help. Now, he hasn’t exactly blown the roof off the Box Office as yet, but he did star in the rather good Blade 2, as well as the two Death Race (remake) sequels, among others.

In Interview with a Hitman he takes center stage as Viktor, a Romanian (I shit you not) hitman, who visits a film director in order to tell his tale, now that he is done with the killing business. Fear ye not though, we do not have to watch Goss struggle with a Romanian accent as he tells his story of how he became a hitman, and also the training that went along with it. This includes training his voice to lose any accent.

So, we follow his story, from youth to adulthood, in which he flees Romania and heads to London. Here he continues his trade, with local gangsters, until something happens with causes him to want to leave the business. It is here that the story comes full circle and ties up end loose ends, and manages a surprise or two in the process.

Interview with a Hitman is one of Well Go USA’s relatively rare excursions into non-Asian cinema, and it really is one of their better acquisitions. It’s fairly low budget, and has a gritty look to it, with the picture being washed of any bright colors. Instead of focusing on the violence, of which there is plenty, director Perry Bhandal, is more concerned with telling a story. The violence comes with the territory of course, but we are not dealing with scenes of gore or excessive bloodshed.

As a film this is a fairly slow-going experience, although I did not find myself getting bored at all. The pacing is deliberate, and just makes the action sequences all the more entertaining. I mean, we aren’t talking elaborate set-pieces here, yet there is enough going on to keep your attention throughout.

The biggest surprise, to me anyway, is the performance of Luke Goss. Aside from nailing the cold emotionless killer, of which you might expect from this style of film, he does also manage to add a certain degree of depth to his character, and I was fairly impressed. The rest of the cast is pretty much made up of clichés and stock villains, but the film really isn’t about them. They are fodder to Viktor’s gunplay, and as such serve their purpose well.

The Blu-ray of Interview with a Hitman isn’t loaded with extras, in fact there are just a couple, but the solid picture quality and above average movie more than make up for this. I wasn’t really sure what to expect from the film, especially with Goss in the lead, but ended up being pleasantly surprised.

I can’t see this film setting the world on fire, as it does borrow liberally from other better films, but as a slice of slow-burning entertainment I would definitely say that it is worth checking out.

Interview with a Hitman is released on Blu-ray and DVD by Well Go USA on March 5th.

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