Reviewed by: Daniel Thompson
Murder in the Bible
|Featuring||Clive Owen, Naomi Watts, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Ulrich Thomsen, Brian F. O'Byrne, Michel Voletti, Patrick Baladi, Jay Villiers, Fabrice Scott, Haluk Bilginer, Luca Giorgio Barbareschi, Alessandro Fabrizi, Felix Solis, Jack McGee, Nilaja Sun, Steven Randazzo, Tibor Feldman, James Rebhorn, Remy Auberjonois, Ty Jones, Ian Burfield, Peter Jordan, Axel Milberg, Thomas Morris, Oliver Trautwein, Luigi Di Fiore, Verena Schonlau, Laurent Spielvogel, Marita Hueber, Giorgio Lupano, Loris Loddi, Natalia Magni, Emilio Dino Conti, Lucian Msamati, Benjamin Wandschneider, Alessandro Quattro, Marco Gambino, Matt Patresi, Tristana Moore, Naomi Krauss, Franco Trevisi, Hakan Boyav, Luca Calvani, Ben Whishaw, Sedat Mert, Tevfik Polat, Darren Pettie, Mike Braun, Michael Bornhütter, Heiko Kiesow, Markus Pütterich, Ronnie Paul, Gerd Grzesczak, Piet Paes, Sigo Heinisch, Georges Bigot, Eric Warren Singer, Federico Pacifici, Brad Holbrook, Jon DeVries, Chris Henry Coffey, Alex Cranmer, Robert Salerno, Nicole Shalhoub|
|Producer||Relativity Media, Atlas Entertainment, Mosaic Media Group, Rose Line Productions, Siebte Babelsberg Film, Studio Babelsberg, X-Filme Creative Pool, Terence Chang, Gloria Fan, Shannon Gaulding, Alan Glazer, Diloy Gülün, Jeffrey Lurie, Henning Molfenter, Lloyd Phillips, Charles Roven, Richard Suckle, Matthew Tolmach, Charlie Woebcken, John Woo|
“They control your money.
They control your government.
They control your life.
And everybody pays.”
When the film makers of “The International” started filming they couldn’t have imagined that their movie, a part actioner/part adult drama about the criminal actions of an international bank, would be released during such a crucial financial downturn in our nation’s economy. The results of these unfortunate times on this particular film are twofold. First of all, it will possibly make this film more accessible to others who may want to see a movie about a topic that is politically relevant. Conversely, however, it also lends less credibility to the plot of the film which is based loosely on a true story about a bank who tried to monitor weapons sales to third world countries in order to control the debts of any third world crisis. If the plot sounds convoluted, that’s because it is, and while a top notch cast and an incredible action set piece do their best to save the film, “The International” never really rises above a muddling, mediocre attempt at a sophisticated thriller.
Clive Owen plays Louis Salinger, a former British agent of Scotland Yard turned Interpol agent who borders on obsessive when it comes to bringing down one of the world’s largest banks. He works with others from various government agencies across the globe, most closely with FBI agent Eleanor Whitman played by Naomi Watts. Together they’ve come close many times to finding an insider willing to testify against the bank, but every time their informant winds up dead. Their travails lead them globetrotting across Europe and North America in effort to bring the bank to justice.
The highlights are the cast, specifically Owen and Watts, playing their roles with gravitas and elegance. Also, “The International” boasts an outstanding action set piece that takes place in the Guggenheim Museum in New York City. The scene lasts around 15 minutes and will be a big hit with action fans, who, coincidentally, will probably find the rest of the movie a bit tedious and boring. And that’s really one of the big problems with the film. Along with a murky, constantly wandering plot, the film really doesn’t settle into a specific genre, and never really satisfies on any level.
From a Christian viewer’s standpoint, the film has average R-rated content. There is language throughout, and, while it’s not gratuitous, there are enough uses of the F-word for some viewers to become uncomfortable. The violence is held to a minimum until the big action scene mentioned in the paragraph above. During that scene, the action is very realistic, and killings are shown up close, along with the blood caused by said killings.
The one big positive I found in the film was in the character of the protagonist, Louis Salinger. Salinger doesn’t care about fame, fortune, or revenge. He is no more than a seeker of absolute truth and justice. It’s with this vigilance that the Christian viewer can be reminded of the resolve it takes to continually stand for truth when the world falters and falls around you. While that’s a great lesson, it’s also one that’s enveloped in a mediocre film that really isn’t completely accessible or made for anyone in particular. Ultimately disappointing, “The International” is a film you could skip and have never missed a thing.
Violence: Heavy / Profanity: Heavy / Sex/Nudity: None
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.