run time: 124 mins
considered: Action, Crime, Drama
director: Antonie Fuqua
starring: Mark Wahlberg, Michael Pena, Danny Glover, Kate Mara, Elias Koteas, Rhona Mitra, Jonathan Walker, Louis Ferreira, Tate Donovan, Rade Serbedzija, Alan C. Peterson, Ned Beatty, Lane Garrison, Zak Santiago, Michael-Ann Connor
movie summary: One the world’s best sharp shooter assassins, Bob Lee Swagger (Mark Wahlberg) has been in seclusion since being left behind during an army operation in Africa. Ticked off at his government and with no interest of leaving his place, a Colonel Isaac Johnson (Danny Glover) comes calling because there’s been an attempt on the President’s life. After spending weeks helping plan and catch the potential assassin the gun is turned on Swagger and he takes the fall for the death of an African Archbishop. Swagger must go on the run to hide while the government tracks him down and while he attempts to clear his name.
While the US President is in Philadelphia to award an African Archbishop a medal, he is assassinated. Swagger is with the Colonel when the bullets fly across the streets but little does he know he is being set up as the patsy for the whole operation. A beat cop is brought in to kill Swagger but he jumps out a window before falling multiple stories with two gunshot wounds. He disarms a FBI agent Nick Memphis (Michael Pena) and steals his car. After a wild goose chase across the streets of Philadelphia Swagger drives the car into the river to escape.
On the run Swagger steals a truck and gathers some basic supplies to heal his wounds while traveling to Kentucky to meet with Sarah (Kate Mara), his dead partner’s girlfriend. They have never met before but share a history that Swagger hopes will make her believe him and help stitch him up. Once he recovers his strength he begins to piece together the events and who was behind them, while Memphis is all over the news for his inability to stop the assassin. Swagger recruits Sarah to go talk to Memphis and get him to do some research. Memphis has spent days digging for answers above his pay grade and is only hours away from being fired. After the FBI realizes he is snooping in places he shouldn’t they kidnap him and set him up to be killed by his own gun. Swagger comes by to rescue Memphis where the pair turn into a team.
Colonel Johnson is furious that Swagger is still alive and that Memphis is now helping him. The pair head to Virgina when they get a tip about an old Russian assassin who had the ability, knowledge, and capability to pull off the assassination. Swagger and Memphis manage to find the Russian in his home but the three of them are ambushed by a team of 24 hired trained killers. Swagger anticipated this attack so come out of the house guns a blazing to survive. They find out that Colonel Johnson is working for the corrupt Senator from Montana Charles Meachum (Ned Beatty) so they called Johnson to arrange a meeting and surrender while Memphis calls the FBI to offer up Swagger.
The meeting between Swagger, Memphis, Meachum, and Johnson takes place in the snow-capped mountains in Montana. The meeting doesn’t go as planned and the FBI flies in to arrest Swagger who turns himself in. Back at the FBI headquarters Swagger gets a meeting with the Director to explain that he was set up and was not responsible for the assassination. Colonel Johnson thinks the meeting is a joke and doesn’t agree with why it was called or that Swagger should be free. He storms off after pointing out there is no evidence proving he was behind this whole thing.
Swagger is realised from jail and sets his sights on Johnson who happens to being hanging out at Meachum’s house deep in the countryside in Montana.
my thoughts: Who doesn’t love Mark Wahlberg running around shooting people in a movie?? It’s been a long time since I have seen Shooter but I just bought it on Blu-Ray the other day for $4. I was pretty excited to watch it again because I remember it being an action-packed game of cat and mouse that ends in a lot of blood shed.
Shooter is another conspiracy movie with a great cast, lots of bullets, and the smarts to be thrilling ride to catch bad guys. Mark Wahlberg always excels in roles where he swears a lot, fires a gun, and always comes out on top. Danny Glover finally takes a turn as the bad guy in the movie while trying to kill Wahlberg for being a better man then he could have ever imagined. Michael Pena is fresh out of the FBI academy but is not as dumb as his co-workers make him out to be. He figures out the majority of the clues to the puzzle on his own before getting heavily involved in the situation. Kate Mara brings her beauty to the story as the only person who will risk her life to help Swagger prove his innocence, she complicates everything by getting kidnapped, but this just adds fuel to the fire and drive Swagger to want to find Johnson and his thugs even more.
There are several other assassination movies out there but none that allow for a story like Shooter to unfold. It is tough to picture someone else excelling in the role as much as Wahlberg does, which makes this movie more enjoyable and watchable. Like his role in Lone Survivor, Wahlberg has what it takes to survive whatever the US Government throws at him to bring him down.
my star rating: 8 out 10
imdb.com: 7.2 out 10
rottentomatoes.com: 48% out 100%