A sniper on a mercenary assassination team, working for an unknown client, kills the minister of mines of the Congo. Terrier’s (Sean Penn’s) successful kill shot forces him to go into hiding to protect himself and the members of the team from retribution. This includes abruptly abandoning his girlfriend who has no idea what is going on. The assassination, paid for by a foreign mining company, triggers wide spread chaos and death in an already inflamed Congo. Terrier returns to the Congo years later working for an NGO, but eventually finds himself to be the target of a paid hit squad somehow connected to the ministers assassination. This leads to immediate deaths and the endangerment of the people working around him, and forces him back into hiding. In trying to discover who has put a price on his head, he begins to reconnect to the members of his old assassination team, including his old girlfriend. Always aware there is no path to redemption for his crimes, he is also periodically …
User Reviews: Based on the novel The Prone Gunman, by Jean-Patrick Manchette, ‘The Gunman’ is a decent action-thriller, that’s engaging, but only in parts. While the action has sharpness to it, the thriller aspect doesn’t entirely work.
‘The Gunman’ Synopsis: A sniper on a mercenary assassination team, kills the minister of mines of the Congo. Terrier’s successful kill shot forces him into hiding. Returning to the Congo years later, he becomes the target of a hit squad himself.
‘The Gunman’ begins with force, but loses momentum mid-way. I wasn’t rooting for the hero on the run, after a point. Also, the identity of the culprit, lacks the bite & offers no shock value. Its predictable to the core. But, the action-sequences work! Not only are they sharply choreographed & executed, they also lend toughness to the narrative.
Don Macpherson, Pete Travis & Sean Penn’s Screenplay is okay. Though it isn’t without merit, it still isn’t powerful enough. Pierre Morel’s Direction is stylish. Cinematography is impressive. Editing is ordinary. Marco Beltrami’s Score is fine.
Performance-Wise: Sean Penn delivers a committed performance, yet again! He enacts the protagonist with complete honesty & his striking physique stands out. He looks terrific here! Jasmine Trinca is nicely restrained. Javier Bardem looks jaded & least interested in the goings-on. Ray Winstone is, as always, competent. Mark Rylance is fair. Idris Elba is wasted.
On the whole, ‘The Gunman’ is a so-so fare.