Not every major movie needs to be designed as high art, and sometimes it can be more than enough to fitfully entertain an audience for a couple of hours before immediately fading from the public consciousness. That was certainly the case for buddy actioner The Hitman’s Bodyguard, and it looks as though sequel Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard is walking a very similar path.
The entire selling point behind the two-film series is watching charismatic stars bouncing off each other and lobbing improvised insults back and forth, with the sardonic wit of Ryan Reynolds counteracted by the brilliantly creative profanity of Samuel L. Jackson. That’s the appeal in a nutshell, so it’s no surprise that most of the criticism directed towards the second installment is levelled against flimsy plotting, one-note characters and the notion that everyone’s just here for the paycheck and nothing more.
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We’ll have our own review up over the next couple of days, but at the time of writing Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard is sitting on a weak Rotten Tomatoes score of just 27%. The opener topped out at 43% on the aggregation site, but fans rated it at a much higher 67%, and something as sleek and glossy watching the likes of Reynolds, Jackson, Salma Hayek, Antonio Banderas and Morgan Freeman getting caught up in a comic crime caper is always going to have an eye on appealing directly to its desired demographic over what the critics are saying.
After the last year and a half everyone’s had, sometimes something as instantly disposable as Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard is exactly what the people need to provide no-frills entertainment, so it should at least be guaranteed to do decent business at the box office when it hits theaters next Wednesday.