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May 7, 2007 | by  | in Film |
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Shooter

Mark Wahlberg comes back down to earth after the critical acclaim of The Departed by playing Bob Lee Swagger an ex military sniper who is set up by assassins in the political thriller Shooter.

Hired by spook Colonel Isaac Johnson (Danny Glover) to plan a simulated presidential assassination attempt to help prevent a real one, he’s double crossed and soon on the run in typical Hollywood fashion.

Despite comparisons to the TV series 24 this is not another post 9/11 neoconservative adventure movie. When asked to take on the assignment he says, “Don’t much like the president. Didn’t like the last one, either.” He is eventually won over due to his idealism and duty to the flag and constitution. This was obviously a calculated ploy to make the film more credible to the audience, considering that the President in real life is so hated that any parallel sympathy for him would have come across as rather hollow.

The president himself is accurately shown as a figurehead with a massive security system to protect what he represents. Just as in real life, his every movement is scoped out by the Secret Service weeks, and sometimes months, in advance. It is like he is a valuable idol and not a real personality.

This film is not just about the journey of a fugitive, there is plenty of action here, the name Swagger is remarkably similar to Schwarzenegger, and there’s a scene that is reminiscent of Commando.

A thoroughly entertaining action flick, Shooter is best viewed when you happen to go into the picture theatre with your popcorn and coke not wanting to think. Unfortunately the film makers try to make you think with too much exposition and threads in the thriller, which is where this film eventually falls down.

ANTOINE FUQUA

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