Mile 22 (2018) R
We see a man and a woman riding in a car in a beautiful looking suburb. The woman has a bunch of flowers in her lap. They are arguing about whether they have put the right address in the GPS. The woman is convinced that they have the wrong address and the man feels that it is correct. They stop in front of a stylish two-story house and get out of the car. They continue to debate if this is the right house and if they should knock on the front door. As they continue to argue, the camera leaves the couple and goes around the house to the big backyard that is connected to some thick woods. As the camera goes into the brush, we see an armed man (Mark Wahlberg) who is checking out the back of the house with his scope, and we realize he can hear the couple’s conversation through an earpiece. We discover that there are other armed men and women with the man listening to the conversation. The armed man begins a conversation with Mother (John Malkovich), a man who is in a remote location with a team of computer and drone experts. Mother talks to the agents on the ground, calling them ‘Child 1’ and ‘Child 2’. Using the drones, Mother tells the agents that there are five people in the house and gives them the go to start the assault.
The man and woman (who we realize are also agents) pull the guns out to their sides and knock on the door. A woman answers the door, and the couple ask about the address of this house. The agents in the backyard move to the back door of the house, getting ready to break in. The agent with the scope stays where he is, covering their back as he gives the signal to attack. The couple in the front of the house attack the woman in the doorway and push their way in as the agents in the back break down a door and enter. They quickly disarm the people in the house and have them lean on the walls. Agents go through the house, making sure they have everybody, as one agent breaks into a room filled with monitors and computers. He finds a safe and begins to break into it. One of Mother’s computer geeks thinks there might be another person in an upstairs room. One of the agents goes back upstairs but can’t find the room or its door. Right then, as the computer geek tells her there is a room right in front of her, shots come from the hidden room, almost hitting the agents. The other suspects start resisting, one going for a hidden gun and another grabbing a knife. A horrific battle goes on, with both sides suffering deaths. One of the people in the house triggers some sort of gas that is coming from the ceilings. Having lost two agents, the agent in the computer room has broken into the safe and is taking hard drives. The remaining agents have either killed or subdued the people in the house. They are given permission by Mother to kill the rest of the people of the house, as the gas has ignited and has started setting the house on fire. The remaining agents leave their dead behind and leave the house, just as the house begins to explode from the fire. They go through the woods, find a car on another street and with the help of Mother and his team, successfully escape the neighborhood.
So starts Mile 22, an action film about a group of elite CIA agents who are given the toughest assignments, led by Jimmy, who we learn during the opening credits had anger issues as a child and lost his family from a car crash when he was eleven. Jimmy is a genius who has a photographic memory and gets ultra-focused on the job, getting angry at anyone that isn’t as focused as he is. He especially gets mad at Alice (Lauren Cohan) because she keeps trying to get her ex-husband to let her talk to their daughter that is in his custody. Jimmy has a tendency to speak in long soliloquies. The long speeches that Wahlberg give have the effect of slowing down the film, and yes, we get it, Jimmy is super smart. At one point I thought Wahlberg’s head was going to explode due to the dialogue he was having to deliver.
Even though the movie is only 95 minutes long, it feels longer due to once the opening sequence is done and the opening credits play, the film bogs down in all its dialogue and minimal action. The film goes back and forth from a de-briefing that Jimmy is giving, which is just an excuse to have Wahlberg’s character to spout commentary on the ills of society and world politics. The film picks up again when Indonesian actor Iko Uwais who did such an outstanding job in The Raid, shows up at the US Embassy, claiming that he has the locations of when a deadly radioactive powered is located. There is a fantastic fight that takes place between Uwais’s character Li Noor and two assassins who are posing as doctors. Uwais manages to kill both men while being handcuffed to an examining table. Wahlberg and Cohan do most of their fighting with guns, but Uwais fights are almost all hand to hand and are the best parts of this film.
This is the fourth film that director Peter Berg has made with Mark Wahlberg and is definitely the weakest of the bunch. The film doesn’t really get up to speed until Jimmy and his unit try to make it 22 miles (hence the name) from the Embassy to a runway, where a US military plane will transport Li Noor to America in exchange for the locations of the powder. A bit of a warning, the film is extremely violent and bloody. I was disappointed that they wasted the fighting skills of Ronda Rousey, who plays one of Jimmy’s team but only has one hand to hand fight sequence.
I hated how this film ended with a very confusing and puzzling conclusion. If you are a fan of Iko Uwais, it might be worth your money, but for me, this fight sequences just don’t make up for the stupid plot. My Rating: Cable
My movie rating system from Best to Worst: 1). I Would Pay to See it Again 2). Full Price 3). Bargain Matinee 4). Cable 5). You Would Have to Pay Me to See it Again
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