There are many things which will color whether or not you buy into the
action/romantic comedy Killers, but perhaps the most important litmus
test is also the simplest and most central question: Can you buy into Ashton
Kutcher as a suave, tough superspy assassin?
Honestly, I never really could wrap my head around that.
isn’t even necessarily meant as a slap at Kutcher’s acting. He is just fine
as the romantic lead here, with his pretty boy charm you can see why a woman
would fall hard for him over a chance meeting in the French Riviera. I just
never bought him as a tough, calculating licensed killer.
filmmakers ask for a leap of faith that their star can’t quite surmount.
(Though I have to admit, I did buy Kutcher as an assassin slightly more than
I bought Martin Mull as his CIA superior.)
again, one asks why Kutcher’s character has to have two such polar opposite
recent wave of violent action romantic comedies (such as Mr. & Mrs.
Smith, The Bounty Hunter and the upcoming Knight & Day) make for
a bunch of uncomfortable fits. What are they trying to do? Create chick
flicks that guys will be willing to go to? Or drag women to action films?
odd splicing of genres instead has a tendency to alienate half of its
a very schizophrenic way of making a film.
course, Killers has the added problem of not being very good as
either an action film or as a romantic comedy. In fact, both sides of the
story are very clichéd and kinda stupid.
Which brings to mind this simple question: Did Katherine Heigl really quit
Grey’s Anatomy for this?
Heigl plays Jen (or “Just Jen” as Kutcher’s character calls her, a tease on
her nervousness upon their first meeting), a gorgeous loser magnet who has
recently been dumped by her latest dork boyfriend and ends up going on
vacation in Nice on the French Riviera with her oddball parents (Tom Selleck
and Catherine O’Hara). She meets a gorgeous shirtless guy named
Spencer (played by Kutcher) who shows her around
while blowing up a drug dealer’s helicopter.
should be said that these early scenes work the best on the film – the
action is a little more exciting, the romantic tension a little more
justified and frankly the Nice scenery is just stunning.
two fall in love, get married and move home to California – all without him
revealing his past as a killer to her.
few years later, on his thirtieth birthday and right as they are finding out
she is pregnant, his past returns in the form of a $20 million dollar
contract on his life. Jen, who is neurotic about everything, is totally
freaked out by all the violence going on around her. Therefore, the
squabbling couple must go on the lam while it turns out just about everybody
they have known in their lives were hit men.
don’t know, somehow, her bumbling into the assassin business hardly seems
like a rom-com formula rife for success. Can true love be rekindled as they
mow down everyone in their path? Is bloodshed a viable alternative to
answer, unfortunately for everyone concerned, turns out to be a rousing “who
the audience really doesn’t care all that much whether a couple gets kissed
or gets killed, a movie really may have to rethink its whole plot and tone.
Copyright ©2010 PopEntertainment.com.
All rights reserved. Posted: June 4, 2010.