This movie here, 'Assassins Bullet', seemed like a no brainer. A slam dunk. A home run. I mean this movie had my main man Isaac Florentine sitting in the director's chair and we already have four Florentine's on this site in 'Undisputed II', 'Undisputed III', 'Ninja' and 'The Shepherd' and we enjoyed all of those movies, in the order listed. The reason I put them in order was because 'Assassins Bullet' will be fifth on that list. And it's a distant fifth. Chances are, as Mr. Florentine keeps making movies, 'Assassins Bullet' will keep sliding down that list until hopefully it slides off the list. Color me disappointed.
A little girl is on a swing… get used to that… when an Arab looking dude in a scarf walks by the park with a briefcase. You know it's a bomb because Arab looking dudes carrying briefcases in movies like this always carry bombs. On one of our many revisits to this little girl on the swing, the bomb will eventually blow up and kill her parents. Finally.
Fast forward some years to the bustling city of Sofia, Bulgaria. We are pleased to see Sofia, Bulgaria actually being Sofia, Bulgaria as opposed to Washington D.C. or Romania or wherever. A mysterious woman in black invades some terrorist looking dudes territory and lays them all to waste with extreme prejudice.
Now we meet heartbroken former FBI badass, current Bulgarian attaché Robert Diggs (Christian Slater) who is still mourning the murder of his wife three years ago. While Diggs does mundane stuff in the daytime, at night he hangs out at some belly dancing
joint with his bong smoking psychiatrist and best friend Dr. Kahn (Timothy Spall), and that's we he meets 'her', the auburn haired sexy minx who has a name I cannot remember to save my life. I could look it up, but it's not worth it. Regardless, something about this red-haired belly dancer has made my man forget about the dead wife as she is now the powerful object of his desire.
Uh, did I mention the school teacher Vicky (Elika Portnoy)? She's the grown up version of the little girl who keeps watching her parents die over and over again from the bomb that blew up while she was on the swing. She has issues and the bong smoking psychiatrist is helping her with these issues.
And finally we have to make sure you aware of The Ambassador (Donald Sutherland) who needs Diggs to jump back into the crime fighting game and find the female assassin in black before she strikes again. Even though she's doing the world a favor I guess.
Now all of these disparate elements are all related to each other in one way or another, the strings being pulled by the mysterious coin flipping dude in the background, with Diggs caught in the middle. Action will ensue, but also an awful lot of talk mixed with confusion spiked with boredom. The action we were expecting, the confusion is almost par for the course for most action movies, but the boredom caught us by surprise.
The first difficulty we had with 'Assassins Bullet' would be classifying what kind of film this is, as it is part action flick, part psychological drama, part political double cross drama with a smidgen of a spy movie tossed in for good measure. This odd mix of genre's, in the final analysis, didn't work out all that well. The action sequences were fine, rest assured of that as Isaac Florentine can direct an action scene about as well as any filmmaker living, but there weren't nearly enough of them. Not even close to enough of them. It did seem that the editing team tried to compensate this dearth of action by using a plethora of camera speed ups followed by woosh sounds, but after a while we figured out that a woosh panning from one person walking down the street to another woosh of another person walking down the street, followed by a quick zoom in to that person… didn't equate to legitimate action.
Thus in the absence of action we have this oddly convoluted story to deal with, one that makes less and less sense the deeper it goes. The basics are clear enough, this being that the shady people want to control the crazy killer to kill terrorists, but we are kind of stuck asking ourselves why Christian Slater's character is even in this movie. I mean he's called in to investigate the assassin, but then once everything is revealed to us… why? You would have to watch the movie for yourself, which we can't rightly recommend, to be in the position to understand why his inclusion in this movie seems pointless, why he's coerced into dating the belly dancer by his friend the bong smoking shrink, and more suspect narrative stumbles, but very little of it makes any kind of logical sense. Of course movies making logical sense is not a requirement for us to enjoy our action epics, but if this movie had moved faster and had more action and less swooshes we wouldn't have been trapped into asking these questions... but there you go.
Again, 'Assassin's Bullet' was a disappointment. A pretty big one at that. I don't even think the inclusion of Scott Adkins could've helped push this one forward.