Review of Killers


Movie Review: "Killers"

-- Rating: PG-13
Length: 100 minutes
Release Date: June 4, 2010
Directed by: Robert Luketic
Genre: Action, Comedy and Romance

"Killers" is the story of a woman who unwittingly marries a retired hit man. Starring Katherine Heigl, Ashton Kutcher and Tom Selleck, the movie offers a comical look at the consequences of living with a man who has more than one skeleton in his closet. The film is a nonstop blend of romance, action and comedy, offering something for everyone.

The story opens on Jen Kornfeldt (Katherine Heigl), who has just gone through a nasty breakup with her longtime boyfriend. Feeling depressed and certain that she'll never find love again, Jen agrees to take a vacation with her parents to forget about her troubles. While enjoying the sunshine and stunning coastline in the south of France, Jen meets the mysterious and handsome Spencer Aimes (Ashton Kutcher). After a few flirty encounters and mishap-ridden dates, Jen admits to Spencer the not-so-glamorous details of her current situation-that she's just been dumped and is currently on vacation with her mom and dad.

In return, Spencer decides to let Jen in on a secret of his own. In a dramatic hotel room confession, he comes clean about his job. The audience learns that Spencer is a professional assassin who travels around the world executing criminals and evildoers. Jen, however, falls asleep before she can learn the truth.

At that point, the movie jumps forward a few years, when Jen and Spencer are newly married and living an ideal suburban life. Spencer has retired from his job as an assassin and has taken up work in construction. The morning after his 30th birthday party, Spencer wakes up to discover that the tables have turned, and he is the target of an assassination plot. Suddenly, everyone in Jen and Spencer's life is a suspect, including the friendly couple who live next door to Jen's father (Tom Selleck). Without warning, Jen's life is turned upside down as she learns about her husband's past and is forced into a high-speed race for her life. As the movie unfolds, Jen processes Spencer's big revelation and ponders the fate of her marriage-all while dodging bullets and running from hit men.

Heigl and Kutcher shine in "Killers," and both actors show off their considerable charm and comic talents. The chemistry between the two is palpable, which makes Spencer's big revelation even more dramatic. When Jen discovers that the foundation of her marriage is a lie, sparks fly. Although the two actors are believable in the love scenes, they are even more realistic when they are fighting. Heigl comes to life when she is angry, lighting up the screen with her expressions and making viewers laugh at the way she delivers rapid-fire, impassioned lines. Kutcher returns Heigl's energy, responding with his trademark cheerfulness.

The real highlight of "Killers," however, is Jen's mother, Mrs. Kornfeldt (Catherine O'Hara). O'Hara has perfect comedic timing and knows exactly when to inject a note of levity into a tense scene. Throughout the movie, her character is seen imbibing all types of alcohol, giving a bizarrely relaxed and lackadaisical attitude to the action and violence going on around her. Her presence lends a much-needed note of hilarity to the action scenes, which are occasionally overwrought with emotion.

The supporting cast members give memorable performances as the various characters in Jen and Spencer's lives. As Jen's father, Tom Selleck is stern and overbearing, creating the perfect balance for her wild and boozy mother. Selleck has not lost any of his magnetic stage presence over the years, and it is difficult to look away when he is onscreen. Rob Riggle gives an entertaining performance as Spencer's drunken work colleague-turned-assassin, and Katheryn Winnick's character gives audiences one of the biggest surprises in the film.

Director Robert Luketic is best known for his work on romantic comedies, but he doesn't miss a beat in "Killers." The fight sequences are entertaining, and Luketic's cinematic design brings an unexpected sense of warmth to the action scenes. He knows how to make the most of his lead characters' beauty and does so without reserve. The contrast of violence and beauty gives "Killers" a surprisingly pleasing and occasionally shocking aesthetic.

Overall, "Killers" is entertaining, particularly for viewers who tire of the standard romantic comedy or action plots. Each character gives an energetic performance, and the cast is packed with big-name stars. With its mix of beautiful people, romance, comedy and high-speed action scenes, the film offers something for every type of moviegoer. Although the movie is not suitable for children, it is the perfect choice for a date night or a relaxed evening with friends.

Rating: 3 out of 5