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FILM
Review
An opinion piece that you describe, praises or criticizes, on the whole or partly, to cultural or entertainment work. It must be written by an expert on the matter

‘Hit Man’: A nonsensical script with very little flair

Nothing bad will happen to you for watching and listening to these intrigues, but they are supposed to at least entertain you. In my case, I remained cool as an iceberg as I watched Richard Linklater’s latest film

Hit Man
Adria Arjona and Glen Powell, in 'Hit Man'.
Carlos Boyero

When lately I am asked that uncomfortable and insistent question of “what movie can I watch?” I try to make myself invisible and unheard. Or else I reply: “Look somewhere else, trust the promotional campaigns, I have nothing to recommend.” Maybe my sense of taste has become atrophied. But there are endless movies being released every week. Why? For what? And on top of it all, with that calculated or instinctive tendency of most to last more than two unnecessary hours, and from which I walk out feeling either the same or worse than when I walked in. My memory has to make severe efforts to find a film that has lately provoked in me the feelings that I associate with the cinema that I love. It happened to me with that little gem by Wim Wenders entitled Perfect Days. And that must have happened six months ago.

Richard Linklater, creator of Hit Man, has an acclaimed name and artistic resume. There are quite a few cinephiles for whom his trilogy Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Before Midnight is the Bible. This is not my case, although I respect its originality. And I’m not in love with Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke either. But I was moved by the extraordinary Boyhood, the story of a boy from the age of seven to 19, an exercise as risky and laborious as it was dazzling. Linklater also deserves a lot of credit as the author of celebrated and original comedies. I’ve seen some, but they didn’t leave much of an impression on me.

Hit Man
Glen Powell as Professor Gary en 'Hit Man'.

And although it seems that Linklater and his co-writer Glen Powell, who also stars in the movie, were inspired by a true event when they wrote Hit Man, I find the plot a bit delusional. It turns out that a philosophy professor who spends his mornings lecturing his students on Nietzsche and Aristotle spends his afternoons working for the police in an unusual job. He poses as a hitman. He connects with a clientele who, out of revenge, jealousy or various reasons, hire him to kill someone. And then they arrest the contractors for their homicidal intentions. It seems absurd to me, I don’t believe it. I did believe the exciting novels by the diabolical Trevanian The Eiger Sanction and The Loo Sanction, starring Jonathan Hemlock, the most renowned art critic and professor, although he also dedicated himself to killing people for money. But here I can’t get the laugh out of this professional with such disparate jobs or his surreal encounters with those who intend to hire him to solve their problems through blood.

Let me clarify. Nothing bad will happen to you for watching and listening to these intrigues, but they are supposed to make you smile and entertain you. In my case, I remained cool as an iceberg. I only got interested when the actress Adria Arjona made an appearance. She plays a truly sensual lady who intends to hire the philosopher so that he can kill her abusive and violent husband. The actor Glen Powell, who they say is one step away from stardom, does not particularly seduce me. I am seduced instead by the looks, the gestures, the movements and the way of speaking of the beautiful Adria Arjona. Her character is supposed to have been created by the script, however, she gets into the role naturally and convincingly. She is an actress to keep track of.

Hit Man

Director: Richard Linklater.
Cast: Glen Powell, Adria Arjona, Retta, Austin Amelio, Molly Bernard.  
Genre: thriller. USA, 2023.
Runtime: 115 minutes . 
Release: June 7. 

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