John Wick writer Derek Kolstad teams up with director Ilya Naishuller to bring us Nobody, a stylised, gory action thriller about a mysterious ex-assassin who must come out of retirement to inflict rage on an evil crime ring. This plot of may appear to be similar to the popular John Wick series, but this retelling of the familiar story is just as unique and exciting as John Wick was when it first hit screens back in 2014.
Hutch Mansell (Bob Odenkirk) is a seemingly ordinary, middle class family man, who’s life is turned around when burglars threaten his family’s safety. This event sets up a chaotic rivalry between Hutch and Yulien Kuznetsov (Aleksey Serebryakov) a stereotypical crime lord villain who wants revenge for the brutal beating of his brother. The contrasting character personalities are perfectly displayed alongside the family orientated motives that they share. Both characters excellently demonstrate the theme of family with their actions. Although they both sit on different sides of the morality spectrum, the reasons for what they do are the same, to protect their family.
These excellent characters are perfectly complemented by the brilliant acting performances from the entire cast. RZA and Connie Nielsen deliver fantastic supporting roles that produce humour and excitement to the already exhilarating film. Christopher Lloyd in particular deserves a mention. The iconic actor returns to his ingenious best, supplying most of the laughs for the film as Hutch’s father, David. The father and son relationship between David and Hutch is one of the high points of the experience. The two characters are sure to send the audience into raucous laughter with their monotonous interactions, and even draw emotion due to their abnormal, yet warm bond. Lloyd and Odenkirk’s chemistry is notable, the two together provide the tenderness in an otherwise vicious production.
The action of the film is as dynamic as anything you will see all year. Fight scenes are visually enticing. Long takes are utilised exceptionally with expert choreography to make the battles more pleasing to the eye. While the editing is seamless, ensuring the combat is easy to follow. The use of blood and gore in key moments juxtaposes the laid back, simple life that our protagonist is living, making the violent moments all the more outrageous. An extended action-packed climax of the film is sure to leave an impact on viewers, thanks to the incredible directing ability of Ilya Naishuller. The sequence is lengthy, but warrants attention throughout, and ends the film in a satisfying manner.
Nobody is a terrific addition to the action genre that deserves a viewing. Not only is it a thoroughly entertaining, combat heavy thriller, but also a surprisingly humble and expressive dive into family values and fatherhood. Violent and gruesome, but also a tender, heartfelt film for the older family members to enjoy.
Movie Review By Felix Baldassi-Winderlich