It seems like ages since I’ve seen Angelina Jolie in anything. I did see The One and Only Ivan, but she was only a voice in that and I wasn’t really bothered about seeing Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. She is now back and on the big screen in Those Who Wish Me Dead… is it any good? Well, carry on reading.
Those Who Wish Me Dead
Those Who Wish Me Dead is directed and the screenplay done by Taylor Sheridan, best known for directing Wind River and written by Michael Koryta and Charles Leavitt, based on a book with the same title. It stars Jolie, Aidan Gillen, Nicholas Hoult, Jon Bernthal, Finn Little and Jake Weber.
The movie has a story that’s been done before, ‘bad guysc chase people through the woods’. That is a simplistic way of putting, so to expand:
A teenage murder witness finds himself pursued by twin assassins in the Montana wilderness with a survival expert tasked with protecting him — and a forest fire threatening to consume them all.
That’s pretty it in a nutshell. Those Who Wish Me Dead starts with the assassins, Patrick (Hoult) and Jack (Gillen) calling on a house posing as fire/gas inspectors. As they leave the house, it explodes in a truly spectacular fashion, I was impressed. I got the above snippet from IMDb and calling them twins was a laugh, at one point one calls the other brother-in-law, can you have a twin brother-in-law?
Cut to Owen (Weber) getting ready for the day, but seeing the local house explosion on the news, it was his boss’ house and knows he might be next since he has some important information. He takes his son, Conor (Little) and goes on the run, being pursued by Patrick and Jack.
We find Hannah (Jolie) and her fire crew getting ready for a day. They are told by Ethan (Bernthal) to behave, so Hannah does a base jump thing; where she’s on the back of the truck, which drives really fast and then pulls a parachute and floats away… this looked ridiculous and she as in the air for about 5 seconds, I thought it was going to be impressive, but it wasn’t.
Anyway, she ends up in a lone Fire Tower. In a completely unoriginal plot twist, she is wrestling demons of her past, about not being able to rescue some boys from a fire. This wasn’t needed at all, she could have just been doing her job during the movie, but I guess it adds some clichéd background to her.
Patrick and Jack catch up to Owen and Conor and kill the dad, leaving Conor to run off into the woods, with the information from his dad. They start a fire to cover their tracks and this is where things start to break down in the movie. Patrick seems to have an issue with the fire, thinking it was going too far, but about 10 minutes later, he seems OK about putting a red hot poker into a pregnant woman’s face!
Conor is on the run and finally meets up with Hannah, then the chase is on. There are fist fights, shooting, running through fire… nothing new, all pretty much predictable and follows the set story for this type of thing.
Then it ends, straight story, no surprises, all good.
The entire thing was pretty weak. I did like the assassins, they were pretty badass and hatable, in a good way. There is a story there but didn’t really add much. Angelina looked amazing, she’s the same age as me but she works it a lot better than I do.
And that’s about that! I see Those Who Wish Me Dead as a decent ‘date movie’, Angelina is playing a strong female lead, there’s action and adventure, bad guys to hate, close shaves etc, but that’s about it.
I don’t think this is a cinema movie though, it’s a streaming movie when there’s nothing else to watch, a below-average thriller.