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October 31, 2018

Hunter Killer (2018) --- "Courage Runs Deep"

Plot Summary
Deep under the Arctic Ocean, American submarine Captain Joe Glass is on the hunt for a U.S. sub in distress when he discovers a secret Russian coup is in the offing, threatening to dismantle the world order. With crew and country on the line, Captain Glass must now assemble an elite group of Navy SEALs to rescue the kidnapped Russian president and sneak through enemy waters to stop WWIII from beginning. (1)

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Hello, Movie Buffs!
      Directed by Donovan Marsh, written by Arne Schmidt and Jamie Moss, and based on the novel Firing Point by George Wallace & Don Keith, Hunter Killer (2018) is a fairly good action thriller that takes audiences inside the battlegrounds of a submarine. Despite all the negative, low rating or deeply opinionated reviews, Hunter Killer is exactly how a war style thriller should be done, not to mention being a well-written story as well.
     Hunter Killer is reminiscent of Crimson Tide (1995) and Jack Ryan’s Hunt for Red October (1990) with a well written and solid story that is both believable and intense. The film takes its time building the tension, it starts with a simple unknown attack on a Russian and an American sub and from there the tension increases substantially to the edge of your seat suspense. This gradually builds up of tension is exactly what this film needed as it slowly gives audiences a sense that World War 3 could very well be just around the corner. As with any wartime, cold war era type film, the cinematography’s (Tom Marais) underwater shots of the submarine with the realistic CGI also help build the tension and helps keep the audience engaged.
     The characters were good, although parts of the script were lacking in character depth. Gerard Butler’s (Olympus & London Has Fallen) character is a bit one-dimensional but he does give a great performance. Normally when he is put in the right role with enough character development, he always manages to demonstrate his talent as an actor. The late Michael Nyqvist (John Wick) may be a Swedish actor but here he comes off best as the Russian Sub Captain, Andropov. He has only a few lines and yet he manages to effectively express himself non-verbally. Sadly he passed away last year June 27, 2017, at the age 56, and never got to see the film hit theaters. Toby Stephens (Black Sails, Lost in Space) as Navy Seal team leader Bill Beaman also stands out in this film. Despite being given some lackluster dialogue, he manages to carry himself rather well and along with his team adds some dimension to the story. Common (Smallfoot; The Hate U Give), Linda Cardellini (A Simple Favor; Legally Blond), and Gary Oldman (The Space Between Us; Darkest Hour) also give some great supporting performances.
     Overall, Hunter Killer (2018) is a fairly good war thriller film with exciting and intense action sequences and a well-written story. Of course, the story could have had some more depth, while most of the characters were good they were also pretty one-dimensional and certainly deserved a lot more. If you’re a fan of wartime, cold war era type thriller films then Hunter Killer is for you, especially is films like Crimson Tide (1995) and Hunt for Red October (1990) interest you too.

 [from the trailer]
Did we just start a war? - XO Brian Edwards
No... but we might've sailed into one - Captain Joe Glass

Final Vote - 7.5 of 10 stars

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Movies Similar
Air Force One (1997)
Crimson Tide (1995)
The Contender (2000)
Fail Safe (2000)
The Hitman's Bodyguard (2017)
London Has Fallen (2016)
Olympus Has Fallen (2013)
Point Break (2015)
Salt (2010)
Seven Days in May (1964)
Taken (2009)
Taken 2 (2012)
Taken 3 (2015)
XXX (2002)
XXX: State of the Union (2005)
XXX: Return of Xander Cage (2017)
White House Down (2013)

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