Wanted (2008) starring James McAvoy, Morgan Freeman, Angelina Jolie, Terence Stamp, Thomas Kretschmann, Common, Marc Warren, Chris Pratt directed by Timur Bekmambetov Movie Review

Wanted (2008)   3/53/53/53/53/5

James McAvoy as Wesley in Wanted

The Day of the Fox

Watching "Wanted" for anything close to intelligence and you are going to be left wanting because this is little more than a CGI enhanced action movie all about the action and the effects. But there is a slight chance that the whole outrageous action side, and this is outrageous, could win you over with bending bullets and out of this world car stunts. That doesn't mean the unanswered questions, gaping plot holes and a lot of unoriginality won't put a dampener on things but the adrenalin rush will entertain, well that and Angelina Jolie who has this look on her face which is half seductress and half killer, basically she looks like she would screw you and then screw with you.

For Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy - Wimbledon) life is dull, his job is dull, he's got no money and his girlfriend is cheating on him with his supposed best friend. But that all changes when he meets Fox (Angelina Jolie - Changeling) who saves him from being shot by an assassin. Confused he not only discovers that his father, who left when he was just 7 weeks old, was an assassin but that the assassin who killed him is now after him because he has inherited his father's special skills. Despite being confused at least being an assassin is more exciting than his normal life and under the guidance of Fox and her mentor Sloan (Morgan Freeman - The Bucket List) he is trained up so that he can follow in his father's footsteps and kill the man who killed him.

Angelina Jolie and James McAvoy in Wanted

Now to be frank "Wanted" from a storyline point of view is not great, maybe the comic book from which it is adapted is better, but the storyline is uninspiring. Following a snazzy opening which establishes this is a movie which will be dominated by special effects we basically get two stories, that of Wesley Gibson who from his dull life discovers that he is in fact in possession of special powers inherited from his father, an expert assassin. And then we get a revenge element as Wesley having gone through some training goes after the man who killed his father but of course all is not as it seems. It is all very obvious and the big twist, well it's not that big because you can see it coming a long times before.

As such watching "Wanted" you can't but help notice similarities to other movies and really by that I mean "The Matrix". From Wesley Gibson being plucked out of his dull life to learning those heart racing panic attacks are really a signal of his special power through to his training it is all very similar. And whilst this develops into a revenge storyline it is a revenge storyline which is no different to those you can see in other movies. This wouldn't be so bad if there was more explanation to all of this from why Wesley has such a special talent to the actual Fraternity and why they kill and more importantly why the kill orders come from an old loom. There are too many unanswered questions and gaping plot holes which makes trying to follow and make sense of it ultimately pointless.

But then with that snappy intro full of CGI enhanced action you kind of know that "Wanted" is a movie which predominantly trades on action and the "Wanted" trailer really pushed this. As such we get some crazy car action, stunts which whilst gob smackingly entertaining are so crazy they border on the comical and just as much gun action with bending bullets and so on. It is a case you need to completely disengage any grip on logic and just enjoy the adrenalin rush and it is an adrenalin rush with CGI stunts which look great.

What is not so great is one bit of casting and I am on about James McAvoy as Wesley Gibson or to be more precise the god awful accent he tries to use because he actually acts his part well, going from klutz to action hero quite nicely. But the rest of the casting is good especially Angelina Jolie as the aptly named Fox. Jolie has this real femme fatale vibe going on, sexy as hell but with a look which makes you feel like the sex would be great but she would probably kill you after.

What this all boils down to is that "Wanted" is entertaining but only because it is an adrenalin rush of over the top CGI enhanced action. The actual storyline is not so entertaining and if you are after anything close to intelligence you are going to be left wanting.