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Good concept for action flick sunk by stunningly inept execution. Huge disappointment
Mark Wahlberg has starred in many fine films. Peter Berg has directed many fine films. Occasionally, the two have overlapped. This action opus is not an example of either. It's a bigger dud than any unexploded bomb Wile E. Coyote ever bought from Acme.
The premise had potential. After an opening SWAT-style raid on Russian infiltrators, Wahlberg and his team of CIA operatives head for Southeast Asia to try recovering stolen nuclear material that could fuel a batch of dirty bombs. When their tip from a local cop (Iko Uwais - Indonesia's Tony Jaa, who is Thailand's Jet Li, who is China's version of what Steven Seagal still THINKS HE IS) comes up empty, they wind up having to get him out of the country ASAP as his price for telling them where it is NOW. The title refers to the distance from the US Embassy to the evac airstrip which they must traverse against overwhelming opposition. The clock is running on that window, while local forces try to wrest Uwais from the Americans, and a big high-tech Russian plane flies above the action with its own mysterious agenda. That's a lot of plotlines for a hectic shoot- em-up flick. Too many.
On the plus side, the script does offer a couple of twists at the end, but one is to set up a sequel that should never be produced; or at least crafted by a new set of writers, editors and director. This one is swamped by dialog so bad that even a whiz like John Malkovich can't make his lines as the head honcho work. Most action sequences are so choppy and/or underlit that they're indecipherable. One should always be able to tell who is killing whom, to know whether each new corpse is a plus or a minus for our heroes. All told, this is one of the most missable films of the year.
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