An ex-CIA agent and his estranged daughter are forced on the run when his employers erase all records of his existence, and mark them both for termination as part of a wide-reaching international conspiracy.
An ex-C.I.A. operative is brought back in on a very personal mission and finds himself pitted against his former pupil in a deadly game involving high level C.I.A. officials and the Russian President-elect.
The expatriate and widower Ben Logan has moved from New York to Antwerp with his estranged teenage daughter Amy Logan to work for the technology corporation Halgate Group. When he breaks a sophisticated security code from a device, he notes that its patent has no record in Halgate and he calls the attention of his boss Derek Kohler. Ben meets Amy and they do not go home; later Ben goes with Amy to his office and they find it completely empty. Further, all the records of his phone calls, e-mails, payslip and bank account have vanished. Out of the blue, a coworker abducts Ben and Amy in the bank but Ben kills him in self-defense. Ben finds a key from a locker in the Central Station and he finds photos of his daughter, himself and his coworkers. His further investigation shows that all the workers are dead in the morgue except Derek Kohler. Soon Ben discovers a huge conspiracy of Halgate Group relative to illegal arms sales to Africa with the involvement of rogue CIA agents. But Ben is ...Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
One alias used by the conspirators is 'Markus Wolf' which refers to the famous head of the East German foreign intelligence service by the same name. One of his biggest achievements was to place a top spy, Günter Guillaume, as an aide to the former Chancellor of West Germany, Willy Brandt. Brandt is also the last name of the female CIA operative. See more »
One of the scenes (when Ben has just discovered his entire company has disappeared) is supposedly shot in Antwerp. However traffic light posts are painted red and white indicating the scenes weren't filmed in Flanders where traffic light posts are black/yellow. Googling a hotel name in the background reveals the scene was actually shot in Brussels. See more »
The Expatriate is a 2012 thriller starring Aaron Eckhart as an ex-CIA operative now stationed in Belgium. This looked like a sleeper hit that didn't get any recognition, and with that premise I started watching it. So far, so good, we got a nice classic setup pretty much similar to Taken and its predecessors as we follow Ben Logan (Aaron) and his rebellious teenage daughter go through one of their usual days. There is something mystical about European-set thrillers that just gets me, those immensely old and well maintained buildings, the cleanliness of the streets and exotic vibe of the people are just so mesmerizing Ben is now employed by a huge conglomerate Halgate and working for one of their subsidiary companies as a security engineer. His job is to try to get pass security protocols, fool the eye scanners and break into safes, sounds interesting enough. What he doesn't know that there is a huge conspiracy surrounding his employer and that soon he and his daughter will become a subject of a manhunt. Targeted for termination by a company with seemingly unlimited recourses, they only have one choice: get to the bottom of this conspiracy in a hope that it will save their lives. Since this a thriller I don't wanna spoil your viewing experience so this is it as far as plot is concerned.
After he defeated aliens in Battle Los Angeles Aaron seems pretty confident in his role as an bad-ass ex-CIA operative, but this is were the complaints about those little things start. While we later find out that he is trained in combat, he is initially presented as a smarty-geeky engineer so it he must be the worlds deadliest man combining both the brains and the brawn (still, an awesome performance by Aaron). While the main three characters are pretty well developed, the rest of them are cardboard cutouts with only one purpose: to say/do their thing to help the story going forward. It would be nice to see something more elaborate story and character wise, but it seems that the writer only had a general idea with the rest of the story working itself, without much thinking.
In summary, this isn't the best thriller this year, but it sure is a damn fine viewing, especially if you like the genre. With good production values and that sleek look that blockbusters have it will definitely entertain you.
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