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Wanted (DVD)

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

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      26.03.2013 09:07
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      One word summary: bonkers

      Bonkers. It's a good word that is much under-used in the English language. I'm going to attempt to address this underuse in this review because if there's one word that adequately sums up Wanted, it's bonkers.

      The plot is bonkers (although if you've seen any of Bekmambetov's previous films, you would expect nothing less). Mild-mannered, put-upon office worker Wesley suddenly discovers that his father was a member of a secret cadre of assassins known as The Fraternity and that he has inherited his skills for assassination (I never realised such things were hereditary). The Fraternity recruits and trains Wesley as he is the only person who can take out a deadly enemy who threatens The Fraternity's very existence.

      Forget the plot, though. As already noted, it's bonkers, makes only vague sense and has enough holes to drive an entire fleet of double decker buses through. To even vaguely enjoy Wanted, you need to completely disengage your brain before you start watching. If you try and think about it too much, it's entirely possible that your brain will attempt to explode out of your head in a spirits escape bid. You have been warned.
      
Wanted is about mindless action and dumb thrills with an (un)healthy dollop of uber-violence sprinkled on top. This is The Matrix after a three day binge on e-numbers; everything takes a back seat to clever special effects and over-the-top action sequences. If you hate films where everything is boiled down to the lowest common denominator and nothing makes sense, then you will hate Wanted. If you are a fifteen year old boy who likes guns, girls and gore then you might well think that Wanted is the best film ever (although, of course, you shouldn't be watching it, since it's an 18 film. Tut tut.)
      
As ever, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. The bonkers, OTT action sequences are impressive; the slow-mo shots of bullets passing through their targets are excellent from both an action and technical perspective. Never mind that the action sequences make only the vaguest of sense in relation to the overall plot: it's clear that Wanted is all about thrills with little or no thought for anything else.
      
The trouble is, thrills can only sustain a film for so long. Too much of the film feels like an endless assault on the senses, an endless parade of special effects, slo-mos, and bullet time-type tricks. Yes, they are impressive but most viewers will yearn for something more.

      The level of violence and gore might also be off-putting as we see bullets exploding through heads swiftly followed by brains. Whilst this is (sort of) done in a comic book style (in much the same way as Sin City, just in full colour), there are still times when it's a little much and could have some people feeling a little queasy.

      For such a bonkers film, Wanted has somehow managed to attract a pretty impressive cast. James McAvoy wears his usual expression of permanent bewilderment/quiet determination, but is generally pretty good as likeable loser Wesley. Angelina Jolie does her usual thing of lurking in the background looking sultry and sexy but, to be honest, one set-piece aside, her role is pretty much irrelevant and she's clearly just been brought in for her A List status and good looks.

      Morgan Freeman also crops up (an odd choice for Freeman, this) as Sloan, head of The Fraternity and does his usual thing of pretending to add lots of gravitas, whilst secretly smiling at how stupid the whole thing is and how large his pay-check is! Even Zod himself (Terence Stamp) puts in an appearance. If you were feeling unkind, you could easily say that Wanted has a far better cast than it deserves.

      Wanted, though, is not about the cast or the plot - it's all about those action sequences and special effects. If the idea of a film made up of an endless procession of special effects and chase sequences is your idea of celluloid Heaven, then you'll watch this and think you must have died. If it's your idea of celluloid Hell, then you'll get a brief glimpse of what an eternity of damnation might feel like and start being nice to old ladies immediately.

      If you're like me, you'll sit somewhere in the middle. You'll appreciate it for the inconsequential nonsense it is; something that keeps you mildly entertained for 110 minutes but is instantly forgotten. It's one of those films where I'm not particularly sorry that I watched it, but neither would I have been particularly sorry if it had passed me by completely. Certainly, I'm in no rush to watch Wanted 2 when it arrives in cinemas soon, but equally I wouldn't rule out me watching it on DVD one day when I've nothing better to do.

      Basic Information
      -------------------------
      Wanted
      2008
      Director: Timur Bekmambetov
      Running time: approx. 110 minutes
      Certificate: 18

      © Copyright SWSt 2013

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      12.10.2012 00:16
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      An office nerd turns his whole life around.....

      Wanted is an awesome, awesome, awesome film. Did I mention it was awesome? Didn't think so....how I missed this first time around, I will never know....

      British born James McAvoy of Shameless fame (back in the day) and more recently, X-Men:First Class, plays a panic attack stricken office nerd who avoids confrontation and regularly takes anti-anxiety medicine. Until one day, someone tries to kill him.....

      Turns out, he is the son of one of the deadliest assassins in the world who has, himself, just been killed and Angelina Jolie has been assigned to protect him. And Angelina Jolie kicks major ass! She looks hot, has got the moves like Jagger and drives better than Jensen Button on an extremely good day.

      Slowly, over the course of several months, she begins to train McAvoy under the watchful eye of her Boss, Morgan Freeman in order that he can take out the man who murdered his father. But sometimes the truth we are told is not always the real story and it soon turns out thsat someone or somebody has been telling him fibs.....in an ancient order of assassins, can he REALLY trust anybody?

      This a big, bold action movie that starts with a bang and then refuses point blank to take any prisoners! It is loud, gritty, violent in all the right places and left me reeling, gasping for breath by the time I reached the end! All the main characters excell at giving the performance of their lives and there is absolutely nothing here not to like! The final scene (which I will not give away) just caps the whole thing off and left me wanting to watch the whole thing all over again. In short, this film is just simply amazing!!

      Has there ever been an action film better than this? I don't think so. I am not normally Miss Jolies biggest fan but here, she simply makes this movie. Some of the stunts she pulls and the moves she makes (oh, alright -her stunt double makes) would not look out of place in the ridiculous Russian flick, Daywatch (remember the car that drives along a building?) but here somehow feels much more credible. There is a whole bit about bending nthe trajectory of bullets with your mind that is far-fetched but, by the time this comes up, you no longer care....

      Oh...Sorry, I forget, did I mention how awesome this is yet?

      This is my favourite film so far this year after {rec}3: Genesis. And it is certainly my favourite film starring Angelina Jolie. If only all action films could be like this.....

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        29.10.2011 17:29
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        Want to see Wanted?

        Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy) is an accountant in a large office. Bored with job and life in general he has a gobby and nasty overweight female boss who enjoys the sound of her own voice and seems to enjoy humiliating him in public. His only 'friend' appears to be Barry who Wesley knows is sleeping with his live in girlfriend and Wesley...well he lets everything go and doesn't appear to have much of say in anything and to keep himself sane and feeling ok he simply pops pills all the time for the panic attacks and anxiety he suffers.

        After work one day he goes into a convenience store with Barry and Barry has forgotten his wallet and so nice guy Wesley offers to pay for the sodas to which then Barry pops a pack of condoms on the bill and again Wesley says nothing although he knows they are for Barry to use with his girlfriend!

        At that moment a woman appears next to Wesley (Angelina Jolie) who wants to talk to him but tells him they gotta take care of something first and all of a sudden Wesley finds himself being shot and Fox (Angelina) being shot at. Fox though is at one with a gun and show no fear and they manage to get out of the shop into her car with them being chased and basically speeding at what looks 200 miles an hour and Wesley....well he's got no clue what the hell is going on and he is one worried man!

        Fox leads him into a building where he meets Sloane (Morgan Freeman) and Wesley gets an explanation finally. HIs Father who he never knew was part of the Fraternity which is a group of assassins, highly trained assassins at the top of their game and oh Wesley those panic attacks and feelings of anxiety you have? Well theyre not real its your super powers bubbling away!

        Well course Wesley doesn't think he has super powers and he thinks its all very odd, till he forced to use a gun and take the wings off flies to which he does and even he's shocked!

        The training is brutal to say the least. Wesley receives beatings whilst tied up, he is taught to use a knife, curve a bullet and many times ends up in a wax bath to heal for a few hours initially as Wesley, before being great has a rocky path to which he's agreed to explore. Well it's not like he's got anything else to do!

        The names of people to kill are given by a loom and are woven and the only person that can read that sacred loom is Sloan and Wesley is told about that due to being not one bit keen on getting out there and killing people however he is convinced of the greater good of it all by Fox who is passionate about what she does as well as being one of the best assassins ever.

        So before Wesley can go off and get the target (the man who killed his Dad) off he goes on a mission and it turns out that Wesley can really hold his own, even he is surprised at how good he is at being an assassin!

        However is Wesley fit and fast enough to get the man that killed his Father, cos to do that he'd have to be smarter than his Dad who is held in high regard by the Fraternity or is there another story going on that Wesley and some of the others may not know about? Im stopping there cos so far I haven't given any spoilers away!

        My Opinion:

        I loved this film! Its very far fetched and a bit silly at times but who doesn't think about being some sort of super hero from time to time...don't tell me its just me?!

        James McAvoy for me was the perfect lead in this film. A bit nerdy and puny looking he just looked every inch a computer nerd in a stereotypical way. To me he just looked like a normal uninspired person and he went from that to being a knife wielding, curve shot shooting assassin! It was great to see his character change and that was a gradual process in the film and not rushed.

        Angelina Jolie, again I thought was brilliant. Sultry and sulky good looks, she looked amazing and her stunts were fabulous. Ok I wish she'd had a bigger role to play but she did play the hard hearted and cold assassin brilliantly so it was great when at one point talking to Wesley about being an assassign and why she felt it was right the character was able to show real emotion and it gave light and dark to the character sort of thing.

        Morgan Freeman....well can he do much wrong? Such screen presence this man was brilliant. As leader of the assassins he was both hard hearted and warm all at the same time.

        The other characters in it only had brief appearances as this film was centralised on three main characters which were Wesley, Fox and Sloan and I didn't even catch any of the others names!

        This is a bit of a blood fest so do be aware of that if you want to see it, it is an 18 film after all. The special effects are good, the stunts brilliant and the whole thing has a modern theme to it which being filmed in 2008 you should hope so really...it isn't that long ago lol.

        Runtime of 1 Hour and 45 Minutes this is a good film and I didn't even mind getting a numb bum for it!

        This review is also posted on Ciao under this same username.

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          23.02.2011 05:50
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          For the adrenaline junkies only !

          " Wanted" is a 2008 Action film based on a comic book of the same name, it stars Angelina Jolie, James McAvoy and Morgan Freeman and is directed by Timur Bekmambetov.

          ------------------------------------------
          The Plot:

          Wesley Gibson ( James McAvoy ) works in a dead end job in Chicago in an office, he is a meek and mild mannered person who suffers from panic attacks and generally gets stepped on by everybody he meets, his live in girlfriend seemingly hates him and also is sleeping with his best friend Barry, who really isn't much of a friend at all.

          One night in a pharmacy he is approached by a sinister but attractive woman named Fox ( Angelina Jolie ) who tells him he's in danger and someone is there to kill him, that man is an assassin named Cross and he recently killed Wesley's father ( Who left him not long after he was born ), she tells him that his father was a member of a secret guild of assassins who have been carrying out assassinations for a thousand years in order to keep the stability of the world, after a shoot out they return to the headquarters of the secret society ( named the fraternity ) where Wesley meets the groups leader, Sloan ( Morgan Freeman ), Sloan informs Wesley that the fraternity members and Wesley himself possess a rare ability to drastically increase the heart rate which gives them a temporary burst of superhuman agility, strength and perspective, Sloan tells Wesley he must train in the ways of the fraternity and ultimately kill Cross.

          Wesley is at first sceptical but eventually agrees, and so begins the gruelling training process, and so he must face the man who seemingly murdered his long lost father, however all is not as it seems and soon enough Wesley becomes hunted himself and learns a terrible truth.

          ------------------------------------------

          While watching Wanted all I could say is "Wow", this is truly a stylish movie and definitely is a visual treat, however the visuals are clearly the strongest part of the movie as I found myself suspending my disbelief a little too much, I understood it is based on a comic book and is somewhat of a superhero movie, but there are elements of the movie I just couldn't get behind and it all started looking ridiculous after a while.

          The actors do a fine job and James McAvoy was probably the perfect choice to play Wesley as he plays the meek and mild turned deadly assassin down to a tee and you truly get the feeling that he is frail and downtrodden early on in the movie, Angelina Jolie looks sultry and deadly in the movie and was clearly thrown in to add the necessary sex appeal, poor Morgan Freeman looks entirely out of place and seems uncomfortable with his role and almost tells you on screen that he's doing it for the money with his by the book performance.

          Overall Wanted is a throwaway movie for me, maybe if you're a fan of the comic books ( I'd never heard of them before I saw this movie ) you'll get a kick out of this, or if you're just looking for mindless action then you'll want to add this to your must see list, however if you're looking for a movie with something of a believable storyline or something you could get emotionally involved in then i'm afraid this may not be the movie for you.

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            02.02.2011 17:33
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            Sometimes, mixing up a whole batch of cliches can be fun

            Having recently treated myself to yet another viewing of "Taken", an action thriller that I felt had enough quality and difference about it to stand out in a largely generic and cliché ridden genre, it seemed only fair I should remind myself of the clichés all over again, in case my expectations became too high. "Wanted" is packed with pretty much every action film cliché you can think of, but it does serve as a reminder that clichés can be fun sometimes.

            In "Wanted", Wesley Gibson is a bit of a no-hoper. He hates his job and is bullied by his boss, has an ergonomic keyboard as he has repetitive strain injury and has a standing medication for anti-anxiety medication. His girlfriend is cheating on him with his best friend, he's broke and his father walked out on the family when he was a baby. Things are so bad that even cash dispensers are rude to him.

            Wesley's life changes completely one night when he is met at the pharmacy counter by a mysterious woman who tells him that his father was a great assassin and that the man who killed him is now after Wesley. Wesley is introduced to a group of people known as the Fraternity of Assassins and inducted into their group. He undergoes a huge amount of training in an effort to develop his genetic skills enough to kill the man who killed his father.

            The story is the first cliché here, the old favourite of the loser making good and then discovering that the good wasn't all it was made out to be. Admittedly, this isn't entirely the fault of the film makers, as the film is an adaptation of a comic, but it's still horribly clichéd. Even the numerous plot twists and mis-directions later in the film have all been done in the genre so many times before that it's not difficult to see them coming. Whilst some of the methods may be a little different, the basic idea behind virtually every aspect of the story here is repeated from elsewhere.

            The script offered nothing new, either. The script writers seem to be from the school of thought that says that if you don't have a decent line to deliver, cover it up by throwing lots of swear words at the script and seeing what sticks. It would be slightly hypocritical of me to be too nasty about this, given how close to the gutter some of my own language can come at times, but there really is no need for it. I'm sure that it's the language more than anything else that earned this film an 18 certificate, as there's nothing else especially wrong with it. Imagine how much better this film could have performed by removing some of the most unnecessary swearing and getting the film a 15 certificate, so thousands of teenage boys who lust after Angelina Jolie could have seen it.

            Ah, yes, Angelina Jolie. Which brings me to another film making cliché; namely that which says that if you have an attractive female cast member, you will find some reason for making her take her clothes off for no real reason. That done, there's the other cliché, which sums up Jolie's career as well as most action films; when emotion is needed, let it be achieved by volume rather than genuine acting. Fortunately, as a group of assassins trained to be cold blooded killers, the cast here aren't meant to be emotional and they achieve this with no small amount of skill. Morgan's deep monotone fits very well here, as does Jolie's immovable facial features. When emotion is required, James McAvoy proves incredibly adept at showing how scared he is by shouting at lot.

            The stunts are also nothing new, either. Some of the shots of bullets are a little similar to "The Matrix" and one incredible jump early on looks familiar, too. The car chases meanwhile, follow the old routine of having completely mismatched vehicles somehow catching up with each other; here between a Dodge Viper and a pet food delivery truck and what looked like a Lada and a train. Of course, a car chase wouldn't be the same without a police car of two being crashed and some of those water barrels that American roads have at junctions to soften the impact of an accident to be run into and those two clichés are out in force here, too.
            The last cliché the film conforms to is the one for the soundtrack. Frequently, when a film like this needs to counterpoint an action scene, it does it with loud music, frequently of the rock variety. That is certainly the case here, although it's sad that the film only seems to have one such song in its arsenal, an 80s influenced pop-rock number performed and written by Danny Elfman. It's not too bad a song on the first listen, but by the time it plays over the end credits, it's about the fifth time and it's already losing much of what little appeal it had by then.

            It's not all bad, however. One part towards the ending of the film had someone show a little more integrity than you would normally expect from a film of this type. There were also some touches that were slightly different, as in the method used for Wesley's second assassination. Late on, the use of rats as weaponry, whilst not entirely unheard of, had a slight twist to it which proved fairly interesting. However, for these moments, you can't really laud a film for 5 minutes of marginally different footage in a film which runs for around 100 minutes. Even for an action film, 5 % originality is incredibly low.

            But for all these things, I can't help but enjoy "Wanted". It's the perfect film when you want to switch your brain off and don't want to have an evening where you're required to think. It's an ideal film to have on when you've got your mates and a six pack of Stella around for the evening, as it's loud and brash and slightly offensive and, after that much beer, so will you and your mates be. It's a lad's film and no mistake and I should really hate it but, for some reason, I don't. It's not even as if I'm all that much in lust with Angelina Jolie to keep the film around for that reason and I'm not usually a fan of this genre of films, but there is something about "Wanted" that makes it appeal to me, but not something I can exactly define. Perhaps it's the massive build up of clichés all in one place that fascinates me.

            The special features on the DVD are, much like the film, slightly lacking and offering nothing new but a lot of fun regardless. The first of these is "Behind the Scenes - Viper Chase", which is a 7 ½ minute feature presented by one of the Executive Producers. This is a look at how the film's major car chase scene was shot. Whilst there are a couple of interesting looks at pieces of equipment, the segment has a couple of poor edits which are a bit distracting and it also is really too short to be a real insight, given that the scene in the film lasts longer than the feature and took three days of filming, which they've compressed into a very short feature. It was interesting to see how different James McAvoy sounds to his character and I loved the stunt driver's comment about the car being "pretty tweaked" after a major jump, which shows how calm they can be.

            The other feature is "A Set Tour, featuring Common", who plays the Gunsmith. Again, this is a short 7 ½ minute feature talking about how they built one of the major locations, both in reality and as a computer model. It was interesting to hear the technical side of things, but as with the "Viper Chase", the feature was really too short to explore this in much detail. Despite the title of the segment, there wasn't a lot of Common in the feature, which is a slight pity as it would have been good to have heard more about things from an actor's point of view rather than just the technical staff, but given that his opening comment in the feature was "it's a textile place where, you know, you make fabric", perhaps less is more from him.

            Perhaps unsurprisingly, a DVD with such limited appeal can be found very cheaply, with prices from as low as 79 pence plus postage at the Amazon Marketplace and from £1.89 including postage from eBay. It's not a lot to pay for something that won't tax you, but may be worthy of repeated watches, just for those Friday evenings when you're too tired to go out anywhere and too tired to think. Someone who is more of a fan of action thrillers and six packs of Stella than I am may rate this film more highly, but for my part I'm simply bemused as to why a patched up collection of clichés and bad acting should give me as much enjoyment, albeit short lasting, as "Wanted" has done. Somehow, the whole package is much, much greater than the sum of its very limited parts

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              06.07.2010 16:18
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              A good action movie if you can forget the stupid storyline

              Despite being a fan of James McAvoy, I was slightly cynical about this film. I have seen James McAvoy play many a convincing role, but I wasn't sure if I could picture him in an action packed, gun slinging assassin movie.
              Never the less I sat down to watch the film with an open mind and for the most part was pleasantly surprised. Now I say for the most part because I had some serious issues with certain bits of the story line, but I will come onto that in a minute.

              The story follows Wesley Gibson (played by McAvoy) who is an ordinary, quite plain and boring guy. He does a run of the mill office job that he hates, for a boss that he hates, yet won't stand up for himself or strive for any better. His girlfriend is cheating on him with his best friend, which he knows about but refuses to acknowledge. It seems Wesley is living a pretty pitiful existence until the day he meets Fox (played by Angelina Jolie) and is drawn into a gun battle in his local supermarket that spills out into a car chase.

              We soon learn that Wesley's dad, who left when he was born, was one of a group of elite assassins but was recently murdered by a rogue assassin. Fox takes him to the leader of these assassins Sloan (played by Morgan Freeman) who implores him to help protect the rest of the ancient group and help them defeat the traitor Cross.

              Wesley learns he has hidden strength and powers that prove his birthright into the group and he sets about being taught, in some unorthodox ways, how to become a trained killer.

              Now all this so far was a pretty good storyline, the action sequences and special effects were pretty good and there were some great scenes. However it is when Wesley learns the insights into the brotherhood that I soon started losing interest. Wesley wanted to know how and why they chose people to be bumped off and Sloan took him to see the 'Loom'. Apparently the ancient brotherhood of assassins were all weavers and had discovered their loom was sending them coded messages , weaved into the fabric, giving them the names of people to be killed. Listening to the loom guided by 'fate' was what the assassins still did to this day.

              Now I don't know about anyone else but this seemed like the stupidest thing I have ever heard. I'm all for using abit of imagination, but a loom that is guided by 'fate'? I just found this laughable and from then on the plot lost its credibility for me.

              There were some good twists to the story that I won't give away and I thought the ending was really good however I had lost too much faith in the storyline to give it a rave review anymore.

              The acting was great from all the main characters and apart from the loom debacle they were all credible and believable. It was just unfortunate that the writers could come up for no better explanation for the brotherhood and so ruined the story entirely. I would say this was a good film but would not recommend it to anyone who is looking for a serious storyline.

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              16.06.2010 16:52
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              Wesley gets the chance to leave his boring life and train to join the Fraternity

              FILM ONLY REVIEW

              Wesley Gibson has a boring life, he works a dead end job and suffers panic attacks. His father left when he was just 7 days old and he struggles to work out his purpose in life and who he is. He gets a visit from a mysterious woman when he is in the store and all hell breaks loose when a man with a gun tries to shoot them both. After being chased by the man he and the girl finally manage to escape and she takes him to recover in a mysterious building.

              Wesley soon learns that his father has been killed by another assassin and he has to train and kill his father killer. Wesley is told about the Fraternity who do the work of the ancient prophets who left details of all the bad people who need killing on a cloth. He has to make the decision whether to join and get revenge for his fathers death or continue in his boring life. Wesley takes the offer of joining and soon he realises he has not been suffering panic attacks it is a super human power which he possesses where he is able to suspend time. He starts his training and soon finds it much harder than he imagined.

              Will Wesley be able to complete his training and get revenge or will he be destined to live the boring life and can he discover the truth about the Fraternity?

              I have only given a brief outline of the summery for this film so don't think it is as basic as I have made out. I found the storyline was good but at times it reminded me of the Matrix films with the way they were able to do certain things and move. I also enjoyed the little twists which we got as for me they were quite unexpected.

              The acting was good, James McAvoy took the lead role of Wesley and he as excellent. He started out as a very shy and weak man and I loved watching him develop and grow throughout the film. He worked well with his small powers and weapons which he had and he really did suit the role as he looked like a normal everyday guy and not a rough hard man. He delivered all his lines very well and I believed all of them and he seemed a genuinely nice man. The role of Fox, who trained Wesley was played by Angelina Jolie and have to say she too gave a good performance. I liked how strong and quiet she was as this gave her a slight edge and air of mystery. She worked well with her stunts and effects and made her character quite believable. I think learning a small part about her past made me warm to her more.

              There were a lot of great supporting actors in the film and the one role which I liked was that of Sloan, the leader of the Fraternity, he was played by Morgan Freeman and I think he was an excellent choice for the role. His voce gave an air of authority to the role without him having to fight and use weapons all of the time. He worked well on screen with all of the actors and looked at ease in his role. Other actors in the film included, Terence Stamp, Common, Kristen Heiger and David O'Hara. They were all very good and gave a good diverse mix of characters.

              The film was set in the present day in America so not much effort was needed for the costumes. I found the scenery was good but at times it was quite dull and dark, I would have liked a bit more of the film to have shown daytime and normal streets and not just the backstreet and allies of the city. The sets were all well made and look good thought. The special effects were excellent and we did have an awful lot throughout the film. The use of the weapons and shooting at times made me look away as some of the shots were shown to go straight through heads and we had to watch the head explode and this was quite gruesome but I have to say they were all well produced and looked very real. The bending bullets was also a good addition to the film, if not a little unbelievable but the way it was brought in to the film and storyline was super and at times I did actually believe it could happen. It was things like this in the film which gave it a Matrix feel and I perhaps would have liked new and fresh ideas instead.

              I cannot remember much about the soundtrack but I know we had a good few upbeat songs for the driving scenes and chases but that is about all. I don't know if this because it was good and fitted well that I did not notice it or whether t was that poor it was unmemorable.

              As this is a film only review there are no bonus features to take about. The running time of the film is 110 minutes and I did find this to be quite long enough. The film has an 18 certificate and I do agree with this as some of the scenes are hard to watch especially when people are being shot and Wesley is going through his training. The DVD can be bought for around the £5 mark and I do think this is a fair price.

              Overall both me and hubby give this film 4 out of 5 stars as the acting and effects were very good and so too was the storyline. I think I would have liked more of new ideas and less of other films thought to have allowed me to give this the full 5 stars.

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                17.05.2010 09:29
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                Left me wishing I was a ninja assassin!

                As a Jolie fan, and a bigger fan of action films with guns American stylee, I was tempted by the trailer for this. I would therefore say, being the woman I am, that this would appeal equally to men and women, and there's arguably some 'eye candy' for both and action to make everyone happy (not that kind of action, the violence type).

                This is rated certificate 18 because of scenes of violence (of which there are plenty!) and language. It's 106 minutes in length, which is about right for this film; I didn't find it lagged on for too long, in fact, the time seemed to disappear quite quickly.

                Wanted was directed by Timur Bekmambetov (Night Watch) and can be classed as a mix of genres between thriller, action and crime. The premise is fairly original with a few twists along the way to stir things up when you think you already know what's going on. That said, it's not the most believable of films, so think of it was a hybrid of Matrix and a film about ninja assassins.

                Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy( is an average accountant in Chicago, who becomes increasingly frustrated by his mundane everyday life and frequently high anxiety levels. Struggling to bite his tongue when his best friend is going behind his back with his girlfriend, or when his boss intimidates and irritates him, he seems to be very on edge. Given this background information, his chance encounter in a store with two armed assailants puts a tailspin on his life.

                It's here he meets Fox (Angelina Jolie), a member of a secret fraternity, who apparently saves his life. She takes him back to this strange but extravagant and mysterious building where he's introduced to other members of the group. This includes Sloan (Morgan Freeman) who seems to be the wise and powerful presence of the group, and their purpose is explained.

                Wesley, upon learning these people are actually a group of assassins, obviously isn't too tempted to stay at first. These trained killing machines apparently take their orders from some bizarre code they consider to be fate, but they also claim that Wesley has an assassin's blood in his veins.

                It's not too long before he's training to complete the mission they believe is his destiny, and we see this 20-something young man go from a depressed & highly anxious accounts worker, to a strong, suave killer.

                So at not the ruin the story, I'll just say that things aren't all as they seem. Whilst the plot does seem a bit far-fetched and unbelievable, it none the less has an appeal similar to that of the Matrix (as an example). Whilst some things seem over the top or plain impossible, such as a bath which heals wounds & builds strength, or some of the numerous action or car scenes, it retains it's watchability without seeming too abstract.

                The cast was well chosen, with McAvoy playing Wesley incredibly well. He doesn't the polished, unfaltering assassin, but rather, we see his transformation, which he really brings to life. Jolie was good as Fox to the extent that she looked the part, though I was quite disappointed because she did lack a human appeal and didn't have a great deal of vocalised input. Not that the guys will be complaining, of course. Freeman stood powerful and enigmatic as usual, adding another top A List name to the mix.

                The special effects and action scenes were abundant in this film. It came across as being ingeniously created and well polished, making it flow well and feel like a high quality movie. In addition, it had some great music to pump up the pace (including one of my favourite bands, Nine Inch Nails) and I found myself really wanting to go kick some ass with them! However, I'm not condoning violence and I wouldn't say you should repeat anything you should see on the film (just so I don't get in trouble!) but it really comes together to put you into the mind of Wesley and engrosses you in the action.

                Overall, I have to give this one less star because of the storyline, which didn't always seem to be too strong. I was also a little dubious about some of the characters, but the quirky nature of the film meant I quite liked it and found is easy enough to watch, so I would recommend it if you're a fan of action, thrillers or ninja assassins!

                2008 RRP £19.99 but is selling on Amazon for £4.35

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                28.04.2010 01:42
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                Wanted

                Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy) is stuck in a dead end job, with a boss who undermines and humiliates him. To make matters worse his best friend is having an affair with his girlfriend and even though he knows that this is happening he doesn't do anything about it, he doesn't care.

                Things soon change though when he meets Fox (Angelina Jolie) when picking up a few things from the pharmacy he is soon caught in the middle of gunfire and it seems that Fox has been sent there to save him. After a few near misses and a crazy car chase the confused Wesley is taken back to the head quarters of the fraternity.

                The fraternity as Wesley soon finds out are a group of assassins, his father who he has never met, was a member of this group until a few days ago when he was killed. Now he finds out that his life is in danger the person that killed his father is now after him. This group of assassins are lead by Sloan (Morgan Freeman) and the way that they find out who they are going to kill next is by a secret code in some tapestry.

                Wesley becomes very interested in the fraternity as it is a way of getting to know who is father was and where he came from, he soon joins the Fraternity and starts training to become an assassin. His reason behind doing so is that he wants to get revenge and kill the person who killed his father and through the fraternity he has a chance to do this.

                These people aren't your usual killers though, they challenge everything that Wesley has ever known. One of the things that they know how to do is to curve bullets, something that Wesley has never known and has never though of possible.

                One of the reasons that I wanted to watch this film is because of James McAvoy, I have been a fan of his since I saw him in Penelope, and I have to say that I wasn't disappointed. I have read many reviews about this film in which criticise his performance but I can't agree with these at all.

                Before watching this film though you have to be aware that many of the things that happen would not actually happen in real life, thankfully I watched this film with my boyfriend who laughed at many of the points in which this refers to, but I can imagine people sitting there moaning about it which would annoy me. I think that if this film was more lifelike then it would not be so impressive, and I really enjoyed these scenes.

                One thing that really impressed me in this film was some of the music, especially when Wesley is sent off on his first mission and is on top of a train. I love the way that the noise of the train is incorporated into the music, it adds to the percussive element in the music and adds some suspense to the scene as well. (Sorry I am a music student!)

                Another scene I really enjoyed is when Wesley returns to the home that he shares with his girlfriend to pick up his gun, Fox comes with him and waits outside, but after hearing the girlfriend that he left behind moaning at him she decides to walk into the flat and then proceed to make out with Wesley in front of his Ex girlfriend. It's something that you would never want to happen to you, your Ex boyfriend turning up with someone as stunning as Angelina Jolie and then making out with them in front of you!

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                  11.04.2010 22:48
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                  Good franchise, badly exicuted

                  Please note there are plot spoilers in this review, not that this matters as this film is so predictable you could work out the plot within 5 minutes.

                  The Wanted graphic novel is fantastic and perhaps one of the best I have read. Its originality and story and artwork are all great...but the movie on the other hand...

                  Wanted is the worst comic book movie ever made. Based on a graphic novel on the same name but nothing like it. The movie follows Wesley Allan Gibson in a dead end office job then it is discovered by a group of assassins that he is the son of 1 of the best assassins. And after a job goes wrong his dad gets killed. Then, surprise surprise, the assassins hire and train Wesley to get him up to scratch to avenge his father. I don't know the end of the movie because it is that bad I had to switch it off. Now then the only way this movie is based on the comic is the title, and a couple of loose plot threads. Special effects are ok, but I could tell it was green screen most of the time. The whole bend the bullet thing is a good enough idea, but is overused and gets drab and boring after a while. An awful film and not worth watching at all. To get the most out of this franchise, read the graphic novel. Perhaps the main reason I dislike this movie so much is because I enjoyed the graphic so much. If you want to watch a good comic book movie, settle down with Watchmen, the Dark Knight, or even Spider-man.

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                    12.03.2010 14:53
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                    Great to look at but not much else

                    Film Only

                    Released in 2008 and directed by Timur Bekambetov, Wanted is based on Mark Millar's graphic novels of the same name that I haven't read so cannot comment on. I rented this from Blockbuster mainly for my partner as action and Angelina Jolie combined are sure to keep him amused.

                    Wesley Gibson has a pretty crappy life; his girlfriend cheats on him with his best mate and his boss loves nothing more than to humiliate him at every opportunity. On a trip to the local pharmacy he meets Fox, who informs him that his father was a professional hit man who belonged to the same organisation as her known as 'The Fraternity'. His father was killed by renowned assassin Cross and now he's coming for Wesley. He quickly becomes engulfed in a world of big guns and fast cars and although this is a welcome escape from his previously tedious life, nothing is as it seems.

                    It' easy to feel sorry for Wesley after all his life really sucks. I think what's appealing about his character is that many people will be able to relate to him; he has a mundane job and dreams of some excitement. Although most don't get pulled from their reality, I'm sure many dream of it.

                    Although Fox helps with Wesley's transition, she appears to be nothing more than a glamorous girl who does as she's told by the boss. I'm not sure many people will identify with her situation as we only see flickers of her background so cannot be clear as to what her motivation is. The leader of the Fraternity is Sloan, who appears to do little more than hand out the names of targets from, get this an old weaving loom that weaves the cloth of fate.

                    Although Wesley is the central character I think the film spends too long getting to know him and his unexciting routine at the beginning. He gets a little annoying because he whines a lot; I almost lost sympathy for him. In contrast it tells us little of anyone else's background or motivation. I think it would have been more balanced if we knew less of Wesley and more of Fox or Sloan; surely people don't just turn into killers after seeing an advert at the local jobcentre.

                    The plot was pretty absurd and unoriginal; it almost picked the worst bits of better films and mashed them together in a nonsensical way. The film makes some very creative gestures with bending bullets and heart slowing assassins without any explanation as to why.

                    The action sequences are pretty stunning to watch and the special effects are good if a little too flashy to be realistic. The sequences are too familiar and seem to bring together every cliché the makers think an action movie needs to be successful.

                    I think the biggest problem here is that it tries to be clever and intelligent by giving hints that there's a higher power at work here. This avenue is never explored so why bother putting it in. If it hadn't tried to be smart Wanted would have been much better because nobody would be expecting a more complex action flick than what it actually is.

                    James McAvoy is convincing as Wesley, he delivers a believable performance and his characters transformation throughout the film is made to look effortless. He delivered his lines well and without him the film would have been a total flop. Angelina Jolie plays Fox, I do feel she was only there to look good which she pulled off but I think it's a shame her character didn't have more substance because she is a perfectly capable actress. Morgan Freeman seemed a little uncomfortable playing foul mouthed Sloan; I just didn't believe him as a cold blooded assassin who took orders from a piece of cloth.

                    This is a simple film; most of it is pretty ridiculous but all the plot holes are cemented over with massive stunts, slick action sequences and fantastic visuals. This is enjoyable if you don't look through the cracks, so sit back and enjoy.

                    This film retails for around £4.00 but I doubt if many of you would want to see it more than once. It is currently available to rent in Blockbusters as part of their 5 films for £5.00 deal, which I would recommend to anyone who likes a bit of mindless but thrilling action.

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                    27.01.2010 20:03
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                    Crap

                    Plot

                    Wanted sees us introduced to Wesley Gibson (James Mcavoy).He is a weed basically he never stands up for himself , he has a dead end job where he is bullied by his power hungry boss.He lives with his girlfriend who is always moaning at him , and when he isn't around she is screwing his best friend.He knows about this but is to scared to do anything about it , as he already suffers from extreme panic attacks.He is stuck in a rutt but wont do anything about it.

                    Wes is then in the chemist getting his prescription (oh and paying for his baest mates condoms that he is going to use to bang his girlfriend),when he is suddenly thrust into a gunfight between 2 assasins,without understanding why Wes is taken by one of them and told that he is the son of one of their former assasins.He is then taken on board the fraternity and trained in all the deadly ways.It soon becomes apparent that everything is not what it seems, so will he discover the truth about this fraternity?

                    Overall
                    Well erm it has a good story line , great actors, and some very good action sequences,but i didn't like it .Its hard to put my finger on a specific thing to not like , whether it was the predictability of the film or the amount of cgi that was used or some of the completely pointless action sequences that do not fit with the storyline.It starts off promising i though i was in for a treat, that i was going to see something that will thrill and exhilarate me but no it was kind of damp.

                    There is way to much cgi used for my taste , some people probably don't mind this but it real takes the sense of realism away, especially when you have a car that flips through the air lands on a bus then drives away. The story line also has a lot of stupid pointless things in that try to be clever like the weave machine,what a pile of crap.Its not clever at all the cgi is pants and James Mcavoy should have stuck to shameless.

                    The soundtrack did not fit , and it just seemed to end all of a sudden it felt like it was building up and up then all of a sudden it ends , and i was like ohh is that it??

                    I paid £13 quid for this , i did get a comic book with it though which was better than the film , i really wouldn't recommend buying this for any more than £5 on any format.

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                      13.12.2009 16:26
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                      Good Film

                      Overview
                      A down trodden, every-day man (James McAvoy) is enlisted into a secret society of assassins with the mission to kill the man who murdered his father. An unscrupulous leader of the assassins (Morgan Freeman) and his team (principally Angelina Jolie) must take the mild mannered raw article and train him to kill without question. But things are not always as they first appear.

                      Film
                      This is a classic action film, filled with the usual high speed car chases, explosions and assorted other spectacular screen fillers. If you like this kind of thing then the film is a peach. It is easy to watch, requires little to no mental capacity but at the same time keeps one genuinely interested with twists and turns a plenty until the very end. If you are, however looking for something a little more cultured, keep searching, this film will not lead to hours of heated debate following the closing credits. The acting is of a high standard, rarely seen in films of this type, though admittedly there are not a lot of heartfelt moments to show any real talent. It is a pleasure to see British actor's in a Hollywood film of this type (Marc Warren also plays a good role, although perhaps a bit limiting for him).

                      Best Moment
                      1000 rats strapped with bombs being used to wreak considerable havoc.

                      Perfect For...
                      Sunday night after X factor, turn your brain off and give it a rest before Monday starts again.

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                      02.12.2009 11:36
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                      Nerd flicks!

                      So, 'Wanted', loosely based on a comic/graphic novel by Mark Millar that went on to be an obscure short-lived TV series back in 2003, the film version inevitable after the success of the excellent Sin City in 2005, a real hunger for this stuff now. The graphic novel can transfer well to the big screen and Wanted certainly had the potential to be a winner. With the brilliant Russian Night Watch director Timur Bekmambetov on board and Angelina Jolie again in that butt-kicking lead role she has been stereotyped with since her Lara Croft adventures made her millions this had every chance of being a hit to that geeky 16-30 group of boys that don't leave their bedrooms for the above.

                      Our very own James McAvoy is the male lead and the latest in a long line of British actors playing Americans. Surely employment laws would ban that in law and union obsessed Hollywood? But he's here and shaping up to be a big Hollywood star in that vulnerable but smart Ed Norton role. This, though, was purely about the money and he's not extended.

                      -The Cast-

                      James McAvoy ... Wesley Gibson
                      Morgan Freeman ... Sloan
                      Angelina Jolie ... Fox
                      Terence Stamp ... Pekwarsky
                      Thomas Kretschmann ... Cross
                      Common ... Gunsmith
                      Kristen Hager ... Cathy
                      Marc Warren ... The Repairman
                      David O'Hara ... Mr. X
                      Konstantin Khabenskiy ... The Exterminator
                      Dato Bakhtadze ... The Butcher
                      Chris Pratt ... Barry
                      Lorna Scott ... Janice
                      Sophiya Haque ... Puja

                      Plot...

                      Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy) is a low grade accountant in a huge office in downtown Chicago, picked on by his fat female supervisor (Lorna Scott), his girlfriend cheating on him by sleeping with one of his workmates (Chris Pratt), all this feeding his frequent anxiety attacks. But life is about to change radically for Wesley when someone tries to kill him in the supermarket, but rescued by a sexy high kicking ober` chick called 'Fox' (Angelina Jolie), a hair raising chase across the city in her fabulous Ford Viper suggesting she aint no ordinary gal, dragging the gear box and Wesley out of that comfort zone like never before and getting him to sanctuary.

                      Wesley is not in her fast car by coincidence. He has been selected by the high order of 'The Fraternity', a thousand year old group of assassins who take out bad guys before they can do their evil. The head honcho of the operation is 'Sloan' (Morgan Freeman), asking Wesley to step up to the plate for his calling. Wesley's estranged dad was also in The Fraternity, but recently retired with a bullet to the head, Wesley oblivious to his dad's career choice until this judgment day, a man he felt always despised him for his chosen career as an office boy chained to a desk. By now Wesley's heart rate is racing, but that anxiety not all that it seems either, this too part of his inheritance, giving him the ability to literally become hyper sensitive in the moment and so increase his reactions 200 fold, that and the ability to bend bullets around corners the Fraternity assassins core skills.

                      After some 'physical' persuasion at the Fraternities HQ he agrees to the challenge, leaving behind his banal life the main incentive, especially when he suddenly has three million quid in his account. The training is tough, a good kicking by the in-house butcher (Dato Bakhtadze) and The Repairman (Marc Warren) the taste of what's to come as the break him down into a real man - rehab in wax up to his eyeballs in a bath adding to the surrealism of it all.

                      The Fraternity picks its targets through fete not evidence, or so Sloane says, an elaborate loom that weaves miles and miles of thread into capricious patterns where the secret code that has been hidden is suddenly revealed and the targets exposed - their millennium old method supposedly foolproof. Now all Wesley has to do is revenge his father's death by being primed for his first kill. But is all this real and can he even kill a man?

                      -The Conclusion-

                      Excuse the pun but there's nothing left to fete in this particular movie. With its Matrix style special effects and superpowers and Angelina Jolie on board it's already earning that niche geek demographic. Jolie actually modelled her performance on Clint Eastwood, believe it or not, although to me she's just rehashing Mrs Smith from Mr & Mrs Smith, which did similar solid rental box-office. Morgan Freeman is also up for some regurgitation, this, his role from Lucky Number Slevin. At the same time of filming this, Batman: The Dark Knight was also being shot in the next lot and Freeman hopped between studios to for fill his contract, this green screen factory film making.

                      The original Wanted comic book had the main protagonists in their own superhero costumes, but a re-write pulling that crazy idea just in time. But with reasonable dialogue that's synonymous with this type of grown up comic book writing that deals with the rebellion against our humdrums lives, and those cracking special effects throughout, this isn't too bad, although nothing special, but still better than the boring Dark Knight. It is shot with a video game and new comic book series in mind and some of this is just shameless bullet time Matrix duplication scenes. One too many bullets have been dodged in slow motion in graphic novels in the last five years for me.

                      It is dumbed down some to target a bigger audience although it's too violent for kids. I think if the dialogue had been stronger and smarter it would have got the fourth star for me. Jolie has lost her sex appeal and you can see the cut here line with the little scissors where the next implant or cosmetic surgery is due. I have never found her sexy but she does this type of emancipated gal pretty well. But the fact she is in it and there's guns and explosions means it has a guaranteed audience. As far as graphic novel goes its ok.

                      Wesley: [voice-over] Want to hear something sad? I use an ergonomic keyboard to keep my repetitive stress injury in check. Just the fact that I repeat something enough that it causes me stress is f*cking sad".

                      = = = = Special Features = = = =

                      -Behind the Scenes of Wanted-

                      We concentrate on the car chase through the city, this Prague not Chicago though. It's cheaper to shoot there by five-fold so money saved to pay Angelina.

                      - A Set Tour -

                      We get to meet some of the cast and a tour of the locations in the beautiful city of Prague which looks nothing like Chicago.

                      = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
                      Imdb.com scores it 6.9 out of 10 (93, 710 votes)
                      RuN-TiMe 100 minutes
                      Any 5 films for £5 for a week at Blockbusters)
                      = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

                      Wesley: [to audience] What the f*ck have you done lately?

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                        23.11.2009 00:12
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                        I highly recommend watching it if you haven't seen it yet.

                        Wanted was a film I had to watch twice in a few days: once with a very kind friend of mine then with my husband. Naturally he watched it for my request.

                        The film was released in 2008 and as genre is a science fiction and fantasy. It was directed by Timur Bekmambetov. This film was the Hollywood debut of the Kazakhstani-born Russian film director, producer and screenplay writer. Previously he directed the Irony of Fate 2.

                        Wanted is a film starring Angelina Jolie, Morgan Freeman and James McAvoy. The screenplay was written by Chris Morgan, Michael Brandt and Derek Haas. The film was a great success and was nominated for two Academy Awards: Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. The classification of Wanted is 18 years and over because of blood and violence. The running time is 110 minutes.


                        Main cast:
                        ---------------
                        James McAvoy - Wesley Gibson
                        Angelina Jolie - Fox (she mentors Wesley Gibson)
                        Morgan Freeman - Sloan (leader of the Fraternity)
                        Thomas Kretschmann - Cross (Wesley Gibson's father)
                        Common - Earl Malcolm Spellman "The Gunsmith"


                        Plot:
                        --------
                        Wesley Gibson works in an office, has an extremely boring dead-end job. He has to take anti-anxiety pills for panic attacks especially when his overbearing boss appears on the scene. He lives with his girlfriend who cheats him with his very best friend.

                        One night Wesley is in the pharmacy when a beautiful and mysterious woman called Fox tells him that his father was the recently murdered assassin and his killer, Cross is cheesing for him. Fox wants to recruit Wesley to take his place.

                        While they are talking Cross and Fox start to shoot to each other then Fox takes Wesley to the headquarters of Fraternity. The way to the headquarters is not as simple it is a very exciting car chase in Chicago's streets. I won't tell you more about the story but it was a block buster.


                        My opinion
                        ----------------
                        For me it was the most exciting film of 2008. As I mentioned before I watched it twice and I plan to watch it again. It is full of action the story is great you never know who the bed boys are. There are several twists in the story line so it is not easy to find out what happens next. I say this because I haven't seen and read the comic book miniseries Wanted by Mark Millar. The story was based on this comic book.

                        I was amazed by the great performance of the actors. Actually all of them were authentic in their cast and played brilliantly. I think it is easier for them to play in a film where the story is so exciting. I heard that James McAvoy suffered a lot of injuries during the shooting.

                        Probably you also remember that this was the film where the role of Fox was originally written for a man. Instead of Tom Cruis Angelina Jolie was hired for the role and the screenplay was modified. I think it was a great decision. She was excellent in this film.

                        I watched it twice but I can't remember the soundtrack of the film. The film was so engaging that I had no free capacity for the music. It must have fit well the action on the screen but that is all I can tell you about it.

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