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Film Review – Redemption

Director: Steven Knight
Screenplay: Steven Knight
Cast: Jason Statham, Agata Buzek
Genre: Action drama
Rating: ****
Venue: Ster Kinekor Cine 4

Rating Score
* – Poor
** – Average
*** – Good
**** – Very Good
***** – Excellent

 

If you have ever wondered, can Jason Statham ever play a role where he is not a bad ass killing machine then you are in for a treat in Steven Knight’s latest film Redemption. Statham shows us that he is indeed one of the best things since sliced bread when he shows us his softer emotional side. Now before you all start to think he has lost the plot you will be glad to know that he still has that “I will kill you if you mess with me” attitude. The story follows Statham as Joey Jones, a former soldier with a past he desperately wants to forget. He is homeless and on the run from a military court martial but then he finds a job when London’s criminal underworld seizes an opportunity to use the ex-soldier’s killing ability. Statham’s role in Redemption is almost similar to the one he played in Parker only that this time he is more dramatic than he is ruthless. Yet, his trademark role of hurting people has not disappeared. He takes on a deeper and more emotional role, and even falls in love with a nun, Cristina played by Agata Buzek. Director Steven Knight uses the London cityscape in a very rustic fashion, that is  opposite from the well-advertised side of the city. The streets and alleys are very realistic, there is nothing grandiose about them, while prettier settings of hotels and restaurants offer some illusion of  paradise. With a sleek transition between scenes, the movie is well directed and firmly grounded in both its plot and its background. The actors are great, even Buzek, who seems half asleep in the first scenes, gives us a riveting performance as she transforms from an ugly duckling into a swan. She is not your idea of a Hollywood beauty, yet she is humbly charming, sweet and has this strong presence about her that shows that she not a pushover. She is awesome as Cristina. I could not help but laugh at her antics and thinking that she is insane. Statham benefits from her presence as well as he manages to show that he is not just all about transporting drugs, killing and breaking peoples’ body parts. Overall it is an impeccable film. The storyline and script are great, the scenery fits the film and the acting is excellent. I truly commend Statham for trying out something new and managing to excel at it. Kudos to Knight as well, it’s not everyday that one makes a socially conscious film and has a thrilled audience. We have Statham trying to become a better man by doing dubious things, getting paid for them and giving the money to charity. Then we have Cristina who deals with conflicts of her faith and Christian duties while still accepting money from Joey. Knight shows viewers exactly what most of us deal with on a day to day basis: we are riddled with guilt yet we fight for redemption. It is the director’s first film and yet he manages to deliver solid gold. Go watch it, see another side of Jason Statham and fall in love with his softer side. I can guarantee you that you will have an awesome experience watching Redemption.

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