In Brief: The suspend disbelief action sequences, and some tongue-in-cheek humor, make Nobody the year’s first guilty pleasure movie.
Four-time Golden Globe nominee, Bob Odenkirk is Hutch Mansell. He lives a very dull life. Gets up, goes to work, comes home. Repeat. Every day is the same. Hutch and his wife don’t have much of a relationship. Nor does he have much of one with his children.
Hutch is shutdown.
One night burglars invade the Mansell household. His teenage son battles them but Hutch — who has an opportunity to shine — just stands there, orders the boy to stop and give the robbers what they want.
The loss of respect from his son sets something off in Hutch.
He used to be a super agent hitman — or some such thing — for one of the nation’s top-secret agencies. Hutch goes after the robbers. That confrontation is another disappointment.
Hutch doesn’t drive. He takes a bus everywhere. On the way home — and totally frustrated — Hutch can’t contain himself when some thugs from a Russian gang get on the bus.
He takes them all on, kills a few, hospitalizes a few others and manages to tick off the gang’s leader who goes after Hutch with typical action movie vengeance.
Then director Ilya Naishuller takes you where action flicks have to go. Bad guys get whomped on and killed, Hutch and his good guy pals and family suffer but prevail, and when bad guy bullets fly they totally miss while Hutch’s bullet ballet is deadly.
In other words, this is pure guilty pleasure.
Yes, it’s two-dimensional. So are the characters. Even good guy Hutch. Who cares? From beginning to end, Naishuller’s flick is suspend disbelief fun.
Odenkirk’s Hutch is a man of few words. The most talking he does is when he tries to tell his life story to the Russian thugs and explain how he became a dangerous killer.
Those scenes are sadly funny.
The gaunt Odenkirk — who stars in TV’s popular, Better Call Saul — is perfectly cast. Dialogue isn’t needed. His rail-like body, vacant eyes and expressionless face say it all and make him look like a killing machine. He’s no Arnold Schwarzenegger but you still totally buy that this guy could take on an army of villains and win.
He also gets some good help from Christopher Lloyd who plays Hutch’s nursing home father. Lloyd plays daddy with plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor.
Naishuller is a talented newcomer with a very bright future. He did a YouTube music video in 2013 called Biting Elbows. That title is followed by a colon and words I am not allowed to use. It doesn’t take much imagination to figure the left out words out.
His video attracted 33 million YouTube viewers and 21 million on Vimeo. It also got the attention of movie notables like Darren Aronofsky and Samuel L. Jackson.
Naishuller’s movie moves right along. It’s packed with action and at 90-minutes, there is no wasted space. Best of all, knowing his movie is going to get a lot of, “Oh, come on now’s” from his audience, he packs the movie with humor.
Humor sells the concept and adds to the movie’s entertainment value.
The idea and screenplay of Nobody comes from the pen of Derek Kolstad who created and wrote the screenplays for the John Wick series. Like Keanu Reeves’ John Wick, he makes Hutch a man of few words.
By the way, two more John Wicks are on the way. Sadly, they’ll have a different writer. Too bad. Kolstad is in his element with this kind of movie. While Nobody is not a movie for everybody, like Kolstad, those of us addicted to reality busting action flicks are in our element as well.
Director: Ilya Naishuller
Stars: Bob Odenkirk, Aleksey Serebrayakov, Kuznetsov, Connie Nielsen, Christopher Lloyd, Michael Ironside, Araya Mengesha, RZA, Gage Munroe, Paisley Cadorath, Colin Salmon
Rated R for mature themes, language and a lot of violence. Nobody is definitely not a nobody movie and this somebody found it to be fun. Action flick addicts will feel the same. Give Nobody a non-nobody 4 out of 5 on the Friday Flicks with Gary o to 5 scale.
You can find Nobody at a few local Portland/Vancouver area theaters.
Gary Wolcott has been reviewing movies on radio, television and newspaper since 1990. He believes — and this is an estimate only — that he’s seen something close to 10,000 movies in his lifetime. Gary is a lifelong fan of films and catches a couple of hundred movies a year. He believes movies ought to be seen on the big screen and not on the small screen in your living room or family room. While he loves movies, he also says reviewing film can be a real sacrifice and that he sees many movies so you don’t have to.
He is one of KXL 101.1 FM’s film critics and joined the news staff in 2014. Gary is also the film critic for Tri-Cities, Washington’s Tri-City Herald.