Movie Review – Those Who Wish Me Dead – Exciting Watch
My Rating – 3 out of 5
Plot Summary – Those Who Wish Me Dead
Angelina Jolie stars in this thriller and is one of the major attractions for many to watch this one. Based on the novel of the same name, by Michael Koryta, it takes off at pace and keeps getting faster and faster. While that in itself can make for exhilarating movie watching experience, there are certain things which seem to have been hurriedly inserted into the narrative – to remain true to the original story line. There are a few threads in the story which should have been fleshed out a bit more, but I’ll get to that later.
Hannah Faber (Angelina Jolie) is a smoke jumper – group of Fire Fighters who jump onto burnt out forests for rescue or recovery, based in the wildernesses of Montana. She’s recently had a traumatic experience, where she could not save a family and a co-worker from a raging forest fire. She blames herself for it, and suffers from major PTSD immediately after the incident. Her lapse of judgement results in her being banished to a metal watch tower in the middle of nowhere, tasked with watching the weather and calling it in if she sees a fire brewing somewhere.
Meanwhile, far away in Florida, a forensic accountant Owen (Jake Weber) is on the run with his young son Connor (Finn Little), as soon as he realizes that his work for the DA in exposing a crime has got the DA murdered and people will now come after him and his family. His escape is to his brother-in-law Ethan (Jon Bernthal) and his pregnant wife Allison (Medina Senghore) in Montana – Allison runs a survival school there and Ethan is the Sheriff’s Deputy.
There are two assassins after Owen – Patrick (Nicholas Hoult) and Jack (Aidan Gillen) who are ruthless and focused. They take their orders from another shadowy character Arthur (Tyler Perry) but these characters and their motivation is not explored fully or explained. They accurately trace Owen and ambush him en route to Montana. Young Connor escapes, with the proof that will bring down Arthur’s operation. Now as he stumbles along the forests, he comes across Hannah, who then proceeds to help Connor escape.
So this how the scenario works out, two real ruthless assassins after a young boy, being protected in turn by a troubled Fire Fighter, a Sheriff’s deputy and his pregnant survivalist wife. Angelina Jolie is magnetic as the troubled but tough fighter but Finn Little as Connor is the star. He really steals the show with his resolute but vulnerable portrayal of a kid under huge mental and physical duress, and displays that he has bright future as an actor ahead of him.
Conclusion – Movie Review of Those Who Wish Me Dead
The movie is exciting in most parts, but somehow the sum of those parts don’t work out. As mentioned earlier, the motivation behind this whole ruckus is rather thin and while the chase and climax are all quite well done, a viewer is left wondering why this kind of a firepower is brought into the story for eliminating a forensic accountant! Worth a watch for Angelina Jolie and Finn Little…
As a footnote – while we acknowledge and appreciate the Police, Military, Medics etc. for their invaluable service, we sometimes fail to accord the same importance and appreciation for what Fire Fighters do. It is no less courageous or admirable than any of the others. I take this opportunity to thank them for their indomitable courage and invaluable service!
Hannah: [after Hannah and Connor survived the forest fire] We looked it right in the eye.
Ryan: What was it like?
Hannah: It was beautiful.
Connor: I didn’t think it was beautiful. It scared the shit out of me.Angelina Jolie in Those Who Wish Me Dead
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