Domino (2019) Poster

(I) (2019)

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Revenge toppled over
TheLittleSongbird19 November 2019
Saw 'Domino' for two main reasons. One was that it was directed by Brian De Palma, responsible for great films such as 'The Untouchables', 'Carlito's Way' and 'Carrie' (am less keen actually on 'Scarface' but still hardly consider that a lesser effort). The other being that it starred Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, so great in 'Game of Thrones' as one of that show's most interesting characters, one of my favourite shows apart from the understandably controversial final season and the slap in the face that was the last episode.

Neither however are served particularly well. In fact almost nothing comes off well in something of a complete mess of a film, that left me feeling disbelief that it actually was directed by De Palma. Of what has been seen of his, enough to judge, 'Domino' is to me easily his worst, one of the rare films of his that hardly anything good can be said about it in my view. Am not saying that with any malice intended, but 'Domino' is just a failure on every level.

Excepting a broodingly committed performance by Coster-Waldau. Carice Van Houten also doesn't do too bad a job, though she has been better.

The other actors are another story, most looking unsure of what to do with their characters or looking indifferent. Guy Pearce for example has never been this bad, even in the mediocre 'The Time Machine' remake. None of the characters are interesting or worth rooting for, was actually annoyed by their lack of personality, the decisions they made and how they behaved and spent the whole duration of the film thinking that. One can be easily forgiven for thinking another director directed 'Domino', De Palma's trademark style that most love and others not so much nowhere really in sight.

'Domino' is severely lacking in any kind of thrills or suspense, let alone a story that is remotely compelling (the pace is very pedestrian) or cohesive. The more action-oriented parts are routine at best and nothing out of the ordinary. Did find myself getting a headache from some of the photography, especially in the nausea-inducing first half hour or so, and even the nice scenery is wasted. The script is flabby and the flow is stilted throughout and lets not begin on mentioning that far too constant and truly over-bearing music score that sounded 20 plus years out of date on top of that.

Overall, very bad. 2/10
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Not good enough
Leofwine_draca27 December 2019
Warning: Spoilers
I'm always a sucker for a Brian De Palma movie but sadly, as with many directors of yesteryear, his best work is long in the distant past. The best we can hope for these days is something mildly enjoyable, but DOMINO isn't even that. It's a low budget Danish terrorist thriller, as a random cop gets involved with a plot involving a man driven to revenge by family tragedy, ISIS terrorists, and the CIA. It's a muddled and disjointed affair, failing when delivering cheesy slow motion and a jaw droppingly awful terror attack that's so wrong-headed that it's unbelievable they included it. The cast, including Nikolaj Costar-Waldau, Carice Van Houton, Guy Pearce and Soren Malling, are all fine but have little to work it. De Palma is at his best when delivering Hitchcock homages (the opening VERTIGO reference is fun) and the soundtrack is nicely done, but overall this is yet another missed opportunity.
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Cops in Copenhagen
nogodnomasters9 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Christian (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and Lars (Søren Malling) are Cops in Copenhagen. After a one night stand, Christian forgets his piece leading to the stabbing on his partner. Christian and Alex (Carice van Houten) investigate as the man got away. The man is Ezra Tarzi (Eriq Ebouaney). He is after ISIS members who killed his father. The CIA wants to use him against ISIS while our cops want him brought to justice.

The movie goes down an adultery path for no good reason. Some killing. Not the best crime drama.

Guide: F-word. Implied sex. nudity (Ella-June Henrard?)
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A bit offensive
Gordon-115 January 2020
I find the gore to excessive, and too in your face. It is more like a slasher film than an action film. The huge emphasis on religious extremists also put me off as well. It would have been a good action film, but I find it offensive.
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Are you still concerned Brian?
searchanddestroy-125 November 2019
Maybe I am too much unfair with this great director from the late seventies till the mid nineties. It seems that he had the greatest difficulties with producers to make this film which his real trademark is nearly obvious during the climax. But there is no long take here, the most notorious De Palma's touch. In the climax scènes, you have some kind of a SCARFACE director's touch but nothing more. I highly prefered his last feature, seven years ago, PASSION. This was more in his DNA as a film maker.
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Quite a comedown for De Palma
Wizard-85 October 2019
Warning: Spoilers
While I didn't find this movie to be as utterly bad as most other IMDb users here have made it out to be - trust me, I have seen a LOT worse - I do agree that the movie IS pretty bad, whether you are a fan of director Brian De Palma or not. It's quite a black mark on his resume. Certainly, he was hampered by being given a budget much smaller than those for his past major Hollywood studio productions, and the fact that the movie was given a musical score that's one of the worst and least appropriate I have ever listened to in a long time. Also, the script has some incredibly inept touches, from the scene where people at a film festival don't hear a machine gun being fired just a few feet away until the bullets are directly aimed at them, to a somewhat abrupt ending that will make you exclaim, "That's it?!?!?" But De Palma does have to share some of the blame for the movie's failure. His main mistake is directing the bulk of the movie in a very casual and impersonal manner. There is pretty much no suspense, and the movie plods along at a pretty slow pace, even during moments that are supposed to be tense. The movie ends up being pretty drab and uninvolving - in short, a waste of time. It's easy to see why this didn't get much of a theatrical release.
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Worthy of Brian De Palma? Not so much...
gradyharp1 June 2019
A funny thing happened on the way to the screen...DOMINO never finds its way to a story. A screenplay by Petter Skavlan in the hands of Brian De Palma doesn't gel, and the audience is left wondering why. Nice cast - and perhaps it is the popularity of Games of Thrones' stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Carice van Houten that will draw some people to the theater. But the film is not Brian De Palma vintage!

Somewhere hidden in the bizarre camera work and odd colorations of the film is a tale about police officer Christian (Nicolaj Coster-Waldau) and his fellow officer Lars Hansen (Søren Malling), married to MS stricken Hanne (Paprika Steen), and the hunt for the perpetrator of Lars' murder. Fellow officer Alex (Carice van Houten), who just happens to have been Lars' secret girlfriend, helps Christian search for the killer as does officer Joe Martin (Guy Pearce) - all of whom cope with the identities of Eriq Ebouaney and Thomas W. Gabrielsson as suspects. And if the aforementioned sounds iffy, that is the film's major problem. Couple that with the very strange cinematography by José Luis Alcaine and the inappropriately 'pretty' musical score by Pino Donaggio and a sound track that presents challenges, and DOMINO!

Somewhere a movie got lost in the shuffle.
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An Intricately Choreographed Ballet
lavatch3 August 2021
Warning: Spoilers
"Domino" was at heart a by-the-numbers thwarted terrorist film. It might have been more watchable without the stylish and "arty" qualities that overwhelmed the experience.

There were three interesting locales in Denmark, Belgium, and Spain. But the narrative design with the two detectives on the trail of some terrorists was routine and slow-paced.

Much of the action almost appeared as if it were occurring in slow motion. Was it really credible that Christian would leap down onto a tile roof to pursue the perp while his partner essentially bled to death? Was it really conceivable that old Lars was having an affair with the young police detective? Was the drone scene in the bullfighting arena realistic?

In the final analysis, there was too much style and too little suspense in this slow-burner.
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ThomasDrufke4 June 2020
This is one of those films I seek out merely for the people involved. It stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Carice Van houten, both of which I loved on Game of Thrones, and is directed by Brian De Palma, a true legend of filmmaking in his prime. Unfortunately, nothing really amounts here. And even weeks after watching it, I'm not sure what the film was trying to be. Overly gratuitous without substance, a strange directing style from De Palma and characters that aren't fleshed out make for a poor experience. Bummer.

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A decent police procedural from de Palma, with signature style
harry_tk_yung15 August 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Let me get this out of the way first, for Game of Thrones fans. Think through the entire 8 seasons and see if you can remember a scene with the Kingslayer and the Red Woman together. I know, they are both in the epic episode "The long night" in the final season, but they don't have a scene together. Perhaps incidentally appearing in the same frame, at the most. It will be an interesting experience to see them as the two leads here, detectives teaming up in an investigation in Europe.

The story starts in Copenhagen and concludes in southern Spain. Christian (Kikolaj Coster-Waldau) and partner cum close family friend Lars (Soren Malling) stumble across a murder, corner the murderer, but let him get away after fatally stabling Lars, who dies in hospital a few days later. Christian is teamed up with Alex (Carice van Houten) and the investigation leads to ISIS terrorism. The climactic finale takes place in Spain, in a bullfighting arena (except that you don't see Carmen stabbing Don Jose).

The relationship between the two lead characters is essentially professional, with comradeship and friendship but nothing romantic. The romance story, of sorts, is in Alex. Entirely unsuspected by Christian, she turns out to be Lars's secret lover, and is now pregnancy though not yet physically showing. Upon being told by Alex, Christian is not too critical of her, even when she intimates that Lars was about to divorce his invalid wife. In any event, the "personal" story is there only as seasoning to the main course, as well as provide some acting opportunity for van Houten.

There is also veteran character actor Guy Pierce, as the ICA agent Joe who competes for the control the killer as a useful tool for doing dirty work. In the climactic finale, Alex shoots the killer dead, prompting the best line in the entire movie. Shaking his head, Joe says to Alex "Does it mean so much to you to revenge your boyfriend?" "You know?", incredulous Christian asks. Back comes the snappy answer "We are Americans. We read your emails". Too bad I did not watch this in a cinema or else I could be part of that thunderous outburst of laughter.

I mentioned the main course. And that would be the legendary de Palma style. You get the Hitchcockian suspenseful mood, right from the opening scene that reminds you of "Vertigo". The colour palette reminds you of Almodovar, but is something quite different, entirely de Palma's own. The deftly used split screen you get. Slow-motion, nail-biting tension heightens the climactic finale in the bullfighting arena, bringing you to the edge of your seat as you are about to find out if a devastating terrorist attack will come off as planned.

In the acting department, which is not always the top draw of this auteur's work, you have very respectable albeit too-brief appearances of Pierce, a master in his own right. Of course, to Game of Thrones fans, bringing together Coster-Waldau and van Houten is something of a special treaty, even when their parts are not particularly well written. These two familiar actors bring to the movie whatever they can under the circumstances. After all, aren't they both this year's Emmy nominees?
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So bad you wonder if the movie was even completed.
cruise011 August 2019
Domino (.5 out of 5 stars).

Domino cannot be describe any further by saying it is one of the worst films ever. Is it a crime thriller? Or a comedy? You have to see for yourself if you want to waste your time. Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Carice van Houten, and Guy Pearce talents were all wasted here. These three talented actors are wasted here with a horrible script. Unless, they were just looking for a project to add to the list. They are great actors but the film in general was just terrible.

The plot is about a police officer seeking revenge for his partner's murder. Which the bad guy is connected to terrorists, which the CIA is trying to take down.

The story is terrible. The script is horrible. Characters makes stupid decisions such as forgetting their assigned police gun at home. Which makes them feel like an amateur police officer. There is a sub plot that is about the dead officers secret affair. And Guy Pearce's character trying to connect the bigger picture about the terrorists.

The direction tries to over dramatize moments in the film which you ask yourself if this is suppose to be a comedy in a dark scenario. Director Brian De Palma who did a classic Scarface and a forgettable Mission Impossible movie really have dropped the ball in his career. The direction is terrible. The action is boring. The music score feels out of place like it is suppose to be a classic mystery romance movie that belongs in the 1960s.

Overall, Domino is one of the worst films ever. Definitely give this film a pass.
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Brian De Palma's worst film ever + absurdly terrible score = it's a big NO from me.
Top_Dawg_Critic3 June 2019
The most annoying and absurdly terrible score in a film - proof how the music can make or break a film. A 5th grader could have written this better than novice writer Petter Skavlan. It's a story told many time before, but much better. The GOT cast Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Carice van Houten plus Eriq Ebouaney and a few others were the only convincing actors. Everyone and everything else was a C-grade production. Brian De Palma needs to find a new career putting out this garbage. The 90 min length felt like 3 hours with the slow pace and bland writing. It's a very generous 3/10 from me, only for the decent cast that tried their best under such a crappy production.
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Domino rapidly topples each component consecutively with an unspectacular finish.
TheMovieDiorama28 September 2019
Oh, how the mighty have fallen. If you had told me that the same De Palma who directed such classics like 'Scarface', 'Carrie' and 'The Untouchables', was at the helm of this feature too. Well, I would've slapped you on the face, forced you to walk down the bustling high street naked whilst casual shoppers ring golden bells and shout "shame!". I guess the only real question that this film proposes is: how? How could an auteur sink so low in creating the most basic, generic and fundamentally forgettable "thriller" of the year? It baffles the mind, it really does. A CIA agent (atleast I think he was? No idea) is tasked in hunting down an ISIS target who brutally murdered his colleague, before further carnage is ensued.

Modern terrorism, more specifically the methods to which Islamic Radicalists use social media to ensnare fear and incite more followers, is not an unknown subject. The area has been explored several times. So already, De Palma has a series of obstacles to overcome whilst assembling his line of dominos. He needed to differentiate the film. To further the topical premise. To become the new 'Zero Dark Thirty'. Heck, I'll even settle for the next 'Blackhat'. Nope. Not even remotely close.

Domino is an unfocused, unfinished and unnecessary feature that literally has no purpose. It doesn't entertain. It doesn't inform. It doesn't even function from a technical perspective. It just yearns for budget. No seriously! The overbearing production and financing issues were noticeable right from that immediate casual Sunday drive. The dreadfully outdated score that bolstered a procedural police vibe found in 70s shows. The clinical direction. The woeful acting, although Coster-Waldau deserves any and all awards for giving it his best shot. The derivative plot that never once captivated me in its minuscule runtime. There is a scene where a terrorist is massacring innocent civilians at a film premiere, whilst stylistically "FaceTiming" the entire ordeal as if she was channeling her inner Steven Soderbergh. The budget couldn't even stretch to proper iPhones, it was the most standard noticeable HDR camera on the market. IMAX. 3D. Christopher Nolan.

Half of the film is edited to be in slow motion, as if De Palma wasn't able to substantiate 89 minutes worth of plot already! The entire conclusive drone situation was in slow motion. The entire...thing. Why? What does it all mean? Are we all just waiting for our early demise? Will drones destroy our lives equipped with rotors so sharp that they slice off our hands? Social media perhaps? Am I a domino? Why was Pearce in this? Why was everything so voyeuristic? Ehhh. I'm done.

Domino is the worst film this year by far, and if it wasn't for Coster-Waldau's commendable performance, this would be one of the worst. Period. No story. No excitement. No nothing. Wait for the next sequel...'Checkers'. No wait! 'Mahjong'...
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Another bored to death thriller film! Slow like hell! Wasting time to watch!
kwenchow25 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
The film is about a cop called "Christian" investigate the dead of his partner "Lars"! Another girl called "Alex" who have a child with Lars also want to revenge for him! CIA officer "Joe Martin" catch the criminal who kill Lars when Christian pass out after encounter with the criminal! As turnout, Joe want to use this criminal as a bait to find another terrorist called "Salah"! Entire film really too slow! My eye barely can open because really bored! Most intense scene actually is the footage showing some terrorist killing the celebrity at the red carpet and a video showing a man head cut off by the terrorist! The ending scene, when a suicide bomber need to ignite the bomb, he waiting the drone flying to him and broadcast his act! This scene really slow like tomorrow never coming! He eventually kill by the drone after Alex prevent him to ignite the bomb! At the very end, Alex kill the man who kill Lars! That's all! You definitely won't watch this film second time! It's really not worth it!
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De Palma at his worst
dar04177 August 2019
Had some okay action sequences but the story was lacking in more ways then one. The acting didn't help much either.
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Awful. Some talented actors but an utterly laughable, predictable plot
random-707781 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Really, sure, the CIA is to blame for everything. Along with that trope, how many tropes can one plow into a single film/ apparently a lot. and Di Palma was once, a long time a go a flawed yet talented director -- all that is left is the flaws
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A Good Solid 7-8 Star ISIS/CIA/Cops Movie - Never Very Exciting, Just An Easy Watch
dwp194826 March 2020
03/25/2020 Definitely worth your time to watch. A fairly reasonable storyline that will hold any viewer who likes this genre, which I do. My favorite genre is shoot-em-up murder, murder, murder, lots of extra gruesome killing, plenty of blood and guts everywhere and then topped off with a little more killing. To little of my favorites in this movie. Bon Appetit'
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VIEWS ON FILM review of Domino
burlesonjesse58 June 2019
Warning: Spoilers
"It's rare to find this kind of talent". Brian De Palma would agree. He himself is pretty talented. After a seven-year hiatus in the movie biz, De Palma is back with 2019's Domino. It's my latest review.

Anyway, Domino gives us one of Brian De Palma's quintessential, over-dramatic film scores. He didn't write the music mind you but the notes are well known here. Italian Pino Donaggio is Domino's composer and if you've seen De Palma's Carrie, his Blowout, or his 1980 razor flick Dressed to Kill, you'll know it's the exact same dude. Every scene and even every tuneful moment is punctuated with pseudo-suspense, malaise, and uneasiness. For a film showcasing 78-year-old De Palma on straight-to-video holiday, Domino could have been a whole lot worse.

In Domino, all the De Palma trademarks are slightly evident. The Hitchcock mentoring, the split-screens, the security cameras, the dire violence, the slow-motion build-ups. It's in there Prego-style. Now is it as elaborate or serpentine as what Brian De Palma was doing in the 1970's or 80's? Not quite. Is it still sort of fun to watch? Yeah, sure it is.

Shot in Denmark, Italy, and Spain (the European locales are more than adequate), Domino's story involves Copenhagen cop, Christian (played by Game of Thrones star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). Christian's partner gets killed by a member of ISIS and he seeks justice for the guy that did it. The only problem is that same guy is working as a double agent for a member of the CIA (Joe Martin played by an excellent Guy Pearce).

All in all, Domino feels abrupt and unfinished at 89 minutes. Heck, I'm not even sure De Palma had any say over final cut (he should though because he's been around for over six decades). Still, Brian's cast is game and like an aging veteran who's a little past his prime, Alfred's faithful protege still has a few cinematic tricks up his sleeve. Domino "falls" but not too far. It gets a rating of 2 and a half stars.
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Al-Din is to attack on Stadium !
saptesh78622 October 2019
CIA wants killer to captured dangerous ISIS leader Al-Din for them on the terms of his family release from bandit. Here cop also want to take revenge of killing his co. But Al-Din is making suicide liquid explosion attack at a Stadium at Almeria. Cop and his female co both are attempting to stop this mis-hap. Movie is not so much effective but even not bad. Casting is okay. Female cop is just looking same as younger Ferra Varming. Watchable at once.
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Happy christmas from sky movies! A.k.A Terrorist suck
allanmichael3023 December 2019
Crap b movie ending really bad, lots of c list actors
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Why are Danish actors speaking English?
thekingsdom30 July 2019
I've lived in Denmark. I've watched a lot of Danish films. This is filmed in Denmark starring Danish actors - speaking English. WTF! Who made that call? What a mad idea lol. The actors pitch and accents are just wrong. It's sounds so weird. Why not just make this film in Danish? These actors can act (in their own language). I've seen them in Danish films, they're good actors. Why make them speak a foreign language and pretend they're not Danish? It's so bizarre. The dialogue sounds so unnatural and it robs the film of any credibility. Meanwhile randomly, there's a Danish cop speaking Danish to a crowd. What? Why's that? Lol. Next, we have the awful soundtrack that others have mentioned. It's like they used royalty free music lol. I have to say, it's worth watching just for the terrible soundtrack hehe. Finally, the overall production is like watching a TV cop show, i.e not great. After 40 minutes, I decided life wasn't worth wasting on this 'frikadeller' of a film. I pushed eject on the dvd player and then grumbled that I'd wasted £3 on this viking hell. As the Danes say, for helvede mand!
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Really great movie!
Med-Jasta28 April 2020
Warning: Spoilers
Great story that develops well and is unconventional just when you think it's being conventional. I knew this was De Palma and that everybody hated it going into it. I didn't know it was a terrorist story when I started it.

De Palma is an amazing director that can make some crap movies. So I go into every one of his movies preparing for the worst. I was pleasantly surprised. It's strange to see a modern movie that actually has good camera work and doesn't just look like a TV show. The music was really good. Haven't heard a score like that in a while that's an undercurrent to the emotional context of the scene.

After the movie I'm left wondering what that all meant, but I don't know if it was supposed to. Stories are stories. I keep wondering who was good and who was bad but I think that was the point. Heros and villains aren't black and white, it's a grey area. Good people do bad things and bad people do good things. CIA guy was a good guy but he was bad. The murderer was bad but he was doing the right thing. The terrorist were bad and doing bad things. No way getting around that one. Showed how they brainwash willing people to do their dirty work and that they're attention whores. Believing in your God is one thing but killing random people in their name is never okay.

I was surprised to see the terrorist murder scene. I haven't seen a movie be that edgy in I don't know how long. In a PC world America has become afraid to satire even the enemy.

The only scene I thought was dumb was the roof top scene. It was a good scene but really why would the cop chase him like that? Wouldn't he just wait or go to the other building or something?

And Eriq Ebouaney! What a face! I wanna see this guy in more stuff! I just read the he was in Kingdom of Heaven and now it clicked. He was really good as well as everyone else.

Really good movie with a couple dumb little things but nothing to dislike the movie overall.
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Domino is difficult to take seriously by characters who undergo incredible dumb actions.
movieman6-413-92951026 September 2019
Domino is a new crime thriller directed by Brian De Palma, the director of Dressed to Kill, Body Double and Snake Eyes.

The film is about the Danish police officer Christian (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) when his police partner and best friend Lars (Søren Malling) is murdered by ISIS member Ezra Tarzi (Eriq Ebouaney) and he seems to get away with it, Christian decides. to ensure justice. During this personal revenge mission he gets help from Alex (Carice van Houten) Lars his ex-mistress. During their mission, they learn that Ezra is being held by CIA agent Joe Martin (Guy Pierce), who uses him as a pawn to find and pick up other ISIS members. Christian and Alex have to make a long journey through different European cities for their revenge mission without being noticed by the CIA or ISIS.

This film is somewhat poorly written and poorly elaborated. The main character makes many stupid mistakes in the beginning, making it difficult to take seriously as a police officer. For example, he forgets to take his own gun with him on his mission, so he asks for his partner's weapon. In this way his partner remains unarmed, which makes him an easy target for the enemy. The relationship between Carice van Houten and Søren Malling also seems a bit too forced, so her reason for wanting to take revenge is too weak in the film. Guy Pierce also seems a bit over the top as a CIA agent who blackmails an ISIS member to be able to pick up other ISIS members. Because of all these poorly worked out characters, it is difficult to take the entire film seriously.

The fight scenes also seem a bit too acted. It is therefore difficult to take the fighting seriously. The fight scenes at the end of the film were all filmed in slow motion in an attempt to build up tension, but due to the slow motion, these scenes are more likely to be filthy.
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Take a pass.
elliotte219 November 2019
1. The score was really really off. Generally I am not the type that notices musical scores but this was so bad it distracted from the movie. The score made this seem more like a afternoon TV movie.

2. Direction was all over the place, I did not care about any of the characters, not sure who was good or bad and the action scenes were muddled.

3. There were decent enough actors but the writing was on par for a first year college amateur director. The movie moved along from one place to another with very little cohesion.

4. Did I mention the score? Yes it was that bad. Almost like playing top 40 song while watching Downtown Abby bad.
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Badly executed De Palma mess
bastos4 December 2020
Brian De Palma is, for me, one of the most virtuoso directors of his generation and his movies are always a visual delight. But apparently he needs a moderate budget to make his movies look the way they do, so it's a bit odd to have a very bare bones De Palma movie, where many of his signature moves are there but they look oddly off. It's like a film student decided to imitate a De Palma movie. It's a very strange feeling to see such bad execution from a master like him, but at the same time it's unmistakably De Palma, with the slow zooms, the elaborate slow motion set pieces and split screens, but in terrible locations and with uninspired lighting. It seems he had a terrible time directing the movie with lots of money related problems with the producers and it really shows in the final cut. But, at the same time, the nostalgic optimistic me really wants to like the movie and see a disgruntled De Palma pull it off, but unfortunately he needed a better script to make it work and this was not it. Which leaves me in a tough spot with how to rate this movie. I'll give it a 5 for old times sake. And one last thing, in this movie's universe, in Spain they speak Spanish, in France they speak French, but in Denmark apparently they speak English, just one of the many oddities that populate the movie.
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