A-list fail to ignite dud script

A-list fail to ignite dud script

November 04, 2012
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Aquirky British rehash of the classic 1993 French crime-thriller parody Cible Emouvante, Wild Target is a "comedy" with an A-list cast. But unlike its acclaimed predecessor, it neither thrills nor amuses.

Rose (Emily Blunt), a free-spirited amateur con artist, dupes Ferguson (Rupert Everett), a gangster with a penchant for art, into buying a fake Rembrandt. Soon after she swaps a fake for the real - a clever yet too simple a plan to succeed in reality - Ferguson's goons realise her nifty switcheroo and hire Victor Maynard (Bill Nighy), the most sought-after assassin in the business, to exact revenge.

Before Victor realises it, he, Rose and the unlikely apprentice Tony (Rupert Grint) have become the targets of another hit.

Wild Target contains a lot of farcical elements. Mistaken identities and misunderstandings are sprinkled over a plot with more holes than Swiss cheese. The tired jokes make the film feel derivative and dull. Even worse, the gags seem to be recycled from a half-dozen old flicks, with the funniest bits in the trailer.

Director Jonathan Lynn assembled a talented cast, but not even they can rescue the lazy script and dry dialogue. That said, Nighy sparkles in his portrayal of a silent assassin looking to uphold the family name and please his mother. His character, a stoic, emotional vault, strikes an awkward yet amusing point of contrast to Rose.

YP rating: 2/5

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