Rescued as a child by the legendary assassin Moody (Samuel L. Jackson) and trained in the family business, Anna (Maggie Q) is the world’s most skilled contract killer. But when Moody is brutally killed, Anna is out for blood and revenge. Right at that moment, she becomes entangled with an charismatic killer (Michael Keaton) whose attraction goes beyond cat and mouse when their confrontation has dire consequences leaving the loose ends of lives spent killing weaved into a complicated and convoluted web.
Spy thrillers, action and intrigue are nothing new for director Martin Campbell, as he has a few Bond films under his belt. But, what he does with The Protégé is on a whole new level and it totally pays off. Not just in the action, but with the casting of Michael Keaton, Samuel L. Jackson and Maggie Q.
Let’s just call it what it is. Michael Keaton is charming, sexy and unpredictable as Rembrandt. Just when you think you have him figured out, he has you ducking for cover. Love Samuel L. Jackson and wished he had more to do and say in this one, but when you view the film, you’ll see why.
This film belongs to Maggie Q! She is fierce, fiery, full of vigor and is running things as the doll in charge of everything and everyone. She does not suffer fools gladly and consistently stays one step ahead of her adversaries in every conceivable scenario. Her athletic skills matched with her acting prowess are a dangerous and delicious combination. As one of my colleagues stated, “…she’s like Annie Oakley in leather.”
Her stunt scenes are insane. Especially one where she literally is crawling inside an air duct. However, my favorite moment is what I call the ‘dinner foreplay seduction’ scene. I literally felt like I needed to take a shower after witnessing it -it was THE best cat and mouse scene EVER!
Having said all of that, the real juice of the film kicks in nearly close to the halfway point. After that, though, it is full throttle, balls to the walls until the end. I’m just elated to watch a female person of color kick butt on alongside two of my all time favorite actors. Oh, and let me not forget about the pristine, classic production design from Wolf Kroeger and costumes from Irina Kotcheva and Karyn Wagner whose designs are seriously a work of art.
Produced by Lionsgate Pictures, The Protégé hit theaters on August 20th.