Those who wish me dead is a fierce and intense thriller dominated by a pair of spectacularly ruthless villains. Angelina Jolie plays a traumatized paratrooper who is forced to defend a young boy on the run from elite killers. Adapted from the novel by Michael Koryta, the film has a simple plot with little character exposure. But it hits like a freight train with sheer violence, a rapid rate of fire, and deft direction from neo-Western author Taylor Sheridan.
In Jacksonville, Florida, a forensic accountant, Owen (Jake Weber), watches the morning news in great anguish. A fire in Fort Lauderdale killed a district attorney and his entire family. He grabs his young son, Connor (Finn Little) and runs out of the house. Today they miss school and go on a road trip. Meanwhile, in Montana, Hannah Faber (Angelina Jolie) wakes up reeling from a vivid nightmare. A veteran smoke jumper and forest firefighter, she has been relegated to the watchtower service after failing a psychological evaluation. Those Who Wish Me Dead Review
Hannah gets drunk with her fire department. She annoys the local sheriff, Ethan (Jon Bernthal), with her antics. He is his friend, but he just wants to go home to his pregnant wife (Medina Senghore). After a lightning strike in the tower, Hannah tends to her wounds in a nearby stream. He sees a boy covered in blood, who runs away from her. When Hannah finally gets Connor to calm down, he tells her the terrifying truth. He is being hunted by men (Nicholas Hoult, Aidan Gillen) who will stop at nothing to kill him.
Those who wish me dead no detail of the narrative is ever delayed or explained. It starts off with a bang, literally, and it doesn’t stop. The full story is basically predators stalking their prey in the deep forests of Montana with a raging fire chasing them all. Director / Co-writer Taylor Sheridan (Hitman, Against all odds, Yellowstone) operates firmly in its wheelhouse. Its characters live and die with a rigorous purpose. There are never ramblings. The reason for the persecution is never explained. This approach works to the end. Many things remain unknown at the end of the film.
Those Who Wish Me Dead Review
The antagonists steal the show from Angelina Jolie. Veteran actors Aidan Gillen and Nicholas Hoult are as cool as they come. I found the dynamics of their relationships much more interesting than that of Jolie and the boy. Assassins kill with precision and efficiency. No one who sees their faces can stay alive. Every encounter with them is lethal. Gillen, most famous for his portrayal of Lord Petyr Baelish, also known as Littlefinger in game of Thrones, analyze his gory deeds like a surgeon. His dispassionate delivery and unwavering obedience from Hoult is fascinating to watch.
Those who wish me dead it has special effects that are essential to the action. Fire is enemy and savior. Some scenes are obviously CGI, but they seem real enough to be threatening. Being caught between the bad guys and a scorching fireball is a hell of a situation. Taylor Sheridan uses excellent camera work and editing to help the FX pull off a thrilling climax.
Angelina Jolie is back on the action bandwagon after years of making dramatic and kid-friendly dishes. The supporting actors are more intriguing here, but she still has the skills to headline a solid action movie. Those who wish me dead is a BRON Studios, Creative Wealth Media Finance, and Film Rites production. It will be released simultaneously in theaters and HBO Max on May 14 on Warner Bros.
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