The Hunter's Prayer

The Hunter's Prayer should be a good time-killer, a bit of B-movie pulp boasting nifty, exciting action sequences supplied by director Jonathan Mostow (who gave us the forever-underrated Kurt Russell highway thriller Breakdown 20 years ago). Set all over Europe, the movie has Avatar leading man Sam Worthington (who also serves as a producer) as an Iraq War vet and junkie who gets hired to kill an American teenager (Mila Kunis dead ringer Odeya Rush) whose family was mowed down back home. When the tortured assassin has a change of heart, he and his one-time target spend the rest of the movie bouncing from country to country, running away from killers.

Unfortunately, once the action is over we get to the story, which is based on a 2004 novel by Kevin Wignall and adapted by several screenwriters (including an uncredited Oren Moverman). It's insipid and uninspired: All the people who are trying to track down this pair, from sleazy guns-for-hire to a crooked FBI agent (Transparent's Amy Landecker), are nothing more than barely developed, murderous assholes. The worst of these is the main villain himself (Downton Abbey's Allen Leech), a slick, slimy piece of Eurotrash who breeds killer dogs, makes his son call his mom a "whore" and is basically too much of a snobby dick to be taken seriously as a baddie.

Even though the movie tries to sneak in some subtext about children paying for the sins of their fathers, the biggest sin The Hunter's Prayer makes is being too dumb to enjoy.

Credits

Director:

  • Jonathan Mostow

Cast:

  • Sam Worthington
  • Odeya Rush
  • Amy Landecker
  • Allen Leech
  • Martin Compston
  • VerĂ³nica Echegui

Writers:

  • Paul Leyden
  • Kevin Wignall

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