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HAYWIRE – Movie Review

As many moviegoers know, the month of January is undoubtedly the weakest when it comes to new releases.  Whether it be a horror film or a romantic comedy, the films are all typically forgotten in three months time.  However, when a director like Steven Soderbergh releases a film in January, my interest is peaked, and it’s safe to say his latest, Haywire, is a very rare exception to the January rule.

The film follows a government operative, Mallory (Gina Carano), who performed a job in Barcelona with her team.  However, she is double crossed during a follow-up job in Dublin, setting her on the run from her team.  She’s now out for answers and revenge, while also trying to stay alive as her team chases her, in a twisty, cat-and-mouse fashion.

Haywire is essentially an exercise in style, but it’s one that I can fully get behind.  Soderbergh does some really interesting work with the camera, whether it be the framing, the color palette, or the content in the shot.  And when this is matched up with a killer score and some brisk editing, it’s reminiscent in tone of Soderbergh’s previous film Ocean’s Eleven, elevating the film’s energy.

The fight sequences must also be noted.  Unlike most modern action scenes, Soderbergh showcases some incredible, meticulously planned choreography and clean camerawork.  No music accompanies any of the action, which takes what could have been generic, throw away action scenes, and grounds them in reality and gives them stakes, making them truly special.

The film clips along at a great pace, clocking in at only 90 minutes.  Soderbergh tells the story quickly, but reasonably, giving it a lively energy running throughout.

MMA fighter Gina Carano makes her acting debut in this film, and while she isn’t phenomenal, she does a good enough job with her character and has an incredible physical presence during the fights.  She leads an all-star cast, featuring supporting performances by Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbender, and Michael Douglas, who all turn in strong work.

While Haywire doesn’t add much to the action genre plot-wise, it’s miles better than any January release so far this year, and it’s enormously entertaining.


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