Wednesday, 18 October 2017 00:00

The Foreigner Featured

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STX Entertainment presents a 114 minute, R rated film directed by Martin Campbell, the Foreigner

Movie review by Georgia Malpartida

The action movie, “The Foreigner”, is based on the book by Stephen Leather’s titled, “The Chinaman,” (in which the title reflects white-on-Asian racism). Jackie Chan portrays the usual Hollywood studio action hero battling evil thugs and shady political forces, while demonstrating people should not underestimate or ignore those that appear older or less powerful. Chan depicts a different kind of role, one of a grieving-parent who puts the pressure on law-enforcement to do their job, while still displaying his martial-arts dexterity that we have come to expect from him in his movies.

In the opening scene, Quan’s (Chan’s) only living daughter is killed in the senseless bombing of a local dress shop, where 19 Londoners die. The authorities — including Pierce Brosnan’s, ex-IRA deputy minister, Liam Hennessy — are slow to react, but Quan persists. He shows up and waits humbly at the London police station, where he attempts to bribe the investigator (Ray Fearon) for the names of the terrorists. When that fails, he starts to track Hennessy, whom he assumes will lead him to the bombers.

The movie turns into a cat and mouse pursuit of Quan vs. Hennessey, Quan travels to Belfast to confront Hennessy, planting a series of bombs — in his office, his bodyguards’ car, his country safe house — to get Hennessy’s attention. But Hennessy is busy trying to arrange his own requests for pardons of old IRA buddies and juggling personal relationships with his wife (Orla Brady) and mistress (Charlie Murphy), either or both of whom we suspect could be involved. This makes it easy for the Quan to comically “run circles around the lot of us.”

The overall view point of this film is as a revenge drama. We root for Chan to defeat the terrorists and to get accountability for Hennessy’s role. Unfortunately, terrorism is something our culture is well aware of. This film allows us to feel the perceived underdog can get justice and can appear to set things right. While teaching us also that violence never brings back those who are lost.

Take home message: never underestimate the foreigner, even if he is older.

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