3 Days to Kill (2014) Review

3 Days to Kill, Kevin Costner

In 2014, while people ran to see Luc Bessen‘s Lucy, many criminally avoided or brow beats his other effort, 3 Days to Kill. McG and Luc Besson teamed up to deliver an absurd and stylish action thriller. Much like Besson’s Taken the plot involves a father named Ethan, played by Kevin Costner, who is pulled back into a chaotic world of espionage, murder, and torture. This plot has been chomped up and spit out countless times; however, Luc Besson and McG give enough twists and self aware winks to the audience. This isn’t Taken 3 nor is it a parody of those movies. These two are merely taking one last fun ride through this genre. This movie focused less on plot and more on character development. Because of the characters, we’re given a delicious amount of WTF? moments with their dark humor and screwballs. The torture scenes are a great example of the change up. Instead of screaming in the victims face, “where is she?”, Ethan’s fatherly approach is beating and threatening a hostage until he tells Ethan’s daughter Zooey a tomato sauce recipe. Yes, the father somehow patches things back up with his family and decimates all the bad guys. McG’s camera work is stylish and fun with a wonderful color palette, yet the scenes seemed a little undercooked. While some scenes were pure eye candy others seemed mellow in comparison. Although it never attains the height of Crank: High Voltage or even McG’s Charlies Angels: Full Throttle, this movie definitely goes to the same dance clubs. Then there’s Kevin Costner’s performance. I quite honestly bought that he was dying of cancer while tripping balls because of his medication in the middle of a shootout, or he was earnestly trying to be a good father while simultaneously choosing which torturing tactics he should use next. Honestly, if he or another actor came in and phoned in this performance, the movie would have lost its cerebral WTF charm. His acting was Oscar worthy compared to the snoring Draft Day where we needed to cattle prod Kevin Costner to make sure he was alive. If you love Luc Besson’s work, this is a movie worth checking out. Bessen traded some of the snarl and spit of Taken for the attitude and humor many of his other movies are known for, and McG did a pretty fine job translating the work to film.

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