R, strong violence, language.
Dir: David Fincher.
US, 2023, 118 min.
Michael Fassbender, Tilda Swinton, Charles Parnell.
“David Fincher’s return to hardcore genre territory after Mank—and his reunion with Se7en writer Andrew Kevin Walker—is a precision-tooled thriller…. The Killer is a masterfully engineered piece. Throughout, Fincher pitches his own methodical control against The Killer’s, but also signals the glitches in his protagonist’s logic and flawed self-knowledge. International locations are elegantly handled without phony glossiness, indeed with emphasis on a certain drab reality factor—not least, the drudgery of the Killer’s perpetual trekking from location to location, airport to airport. The first of these locations, or chapters, is Paris, where our man is holed up in a deserted office staking out his next target… Watching him do very little—survey, practice yoga, eat a burger—we listen to his extended monologue in which he espouses his personal and professional philosophy… But he is lethally flawed by hubris, and his supposedly simple hit fails, with terrible consequences for him and others… Now begins a revenge mission… that leaves a trail of meticulously dispatched corpses as he tracks down his lover’s assailants… The Killer gives Fassbender his most substantial and challenging lead role in years, and he executes it brilliantly, capturing the would-be zen headspace of a protagonist with apparently no interiority, yet with much to say about who he is and what he does… It’s a compelling performance in a compelling film—one that’s more than a sleek genre exercise, but is likely to reward repeated viewings.” —Jonathan Romney, Screen Daily