Blackhat (2015) – Film Review

blackhat

Blackhat is directed by Michael Mann who is probably most famous for films such as Heat (1995) and Collateral (2004).  The movie stars the better known Hemsworth, Chris, as a jailed computer hacker who is freed from prison to help a joint US-Chinese task force track down the person responsible for causing an incident at a nuclear power station.

What follows is a game of cat and mouse as the team follow the trail of breadcrumbs across the world.  In typical Mann style we get plenty of night-time shots and a generous portion of handheld camera work.  Sadly this doesn’t hide the fact that this film is incredibly tedious.  I’m not sure what happened but Blackhat has no energy at all.  The cast seem to be going through the motions and there is absolutely no conviction.  The worst example of this is the forced romance between Hemsworth’s character and a member of the Chinese team.  Give me a break.

Unfortunately the use of handheld camera work trips over into the world of shake-e-cam as I have decided to dub it.  There is a fight scene in a Chinese restaurant in which it is impossible to make out anything that is going on.  There is another scene in which the camera is following Hemsworth running at speed down an alley and it looks like they’ve set the camera on a paint mixer.  I don’t know if this was a post-production decision but it was a big mistake.

The one bright spot in the film is the appearance of Viola Davies as Carol Barrett, a senior agent in the FBI who is the one actor to display a hint of charisma but it can’t save this snore fest.  I’m going to save some energy as well and cut this review short because I’m already starting to forget what happened in Blackhat.  To paraphrase another critic, this film is worse than a one star movie because it’s not even interesting.  My rating 2/5.

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