The Foreigner

The Foreigner

In Theatres: 
Oct 13, 2017
Running Time: 
113 minutes

This action thriller from the director of Casino Royale tells the story of Quan (Jackie Chan), a humble London restaurant owner and devoted father.  In the few minutes we share with Quan and his daughter, his love shines through. He is doting and nosey, happily sharing an afternoon with his daughter until she is killed by Northern Irish terrorist’s bomb. Chan’s performance as a grieving father connects and is incredibly effective. His grief, isolation, brokenness, and rage are palpable despite his lack of lines. It is as if you can see his soul being drained from him.

Enraged and motivated by losing the last of his family, Quan begins a relentless search for the identity of the terrorists. He shows up at police headquarters everyday, watches for news of the bombing and collects newspaper articles until he finds Liam Hennessy (Pierce Brosnan). Hennessy is a British government official with ties to the same group who committed the bombing. Bronson is a gruff, brooding, sometimes foaming at the mouth, tattooed politician facing a clash between his past and his present, attempting to contain it all when Quan shows up at his door.

Chan’s fight scenes are just as thrilling as ever. Using the environment around him, intellect, traps, and some inventive chemistry he confounds his enemies at every turn. He stays a step ahead, a constant threat with one single question, “Names?”

The political thriller meets cat-and-mouse hunt is a fine combination, however, there is at least a thirty minute stretch without Chan. Brosnan’s storyline is a compelling one, but it is not as consuming, emotional, nor as focused as Chan’s. While I love a political drama, they don’t have the fight scenes I came for. It takes so much away from Quan’s story you begin to wonder if you’re watching two different films.

Maria Jackson
Review by Maria Jackson
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