This is a film that really snuck up on me. Until I saw the trailer for it a few months ago, I didn’t even know this existed but it quickly became one of my most anticipated films of the year. The prospect of seeing Bob Odenkirk as an action hero, plus the teaming up of the director of Hardcore Henry with the writer of John Wick, sounded like an ideal action film and I ended up having a lot of fun with it.
The film follows Hutch Mansell, a seemingly ordinary man who’s in a rut in his life. After his house gets broken into, a series of events are triggered which leads to Hutch earning the wrath of Yulian Kuznetsov, a key figure in the Russian mafia. However, it’s revealed that Hutch was formerly an elite government assassin and it becomes a war between Hutch and Yulian. Now the general story is very similar to that of John Wick, which is unsurprising given that it’s the same writer, but what makes this film stand out is how much more time is given to Hutch’s ordinary life. It’s a good deal into the film before Hutch gets into his first action scene, but even before then we see the desire for violence in him start to rise and how his ordinary suburban life is at odds with his true nature. This is really a film about embracing the darker side of yourself as it is a more honest reflection of who you are. It also helps that there’s a good amount of dark comedy in the film that makes it a fun watch. It gets the right tone of being violent and playful that makes it a blast to watch.
The entertainment factor is aided by the cast. Bob Odenkirk makes for a very convincing action lead. In the early parts of the film you can feel an inner rage in the character that is trying to get out, but once it is released, he feels more relaxed in his performance and has good chemistry with his family, showing how the darker and lighter sides of his life need to be in balance. Aleksei Serebryakov is an entertaining villain, hamming it up and never taking the film too seriously, making him a good foil for Odenkirk. There’s a lot of fun with Christopher Lloyd and RZA in their roles, although I don’t really want to say more as the most fun parts from them come at the end of the film and I don’t want to spoil the payoffs. I think that Connie Nielsen and Michael Ironside were underutilised, but their roles fit the overall tone of the film.
The action scenes though are where the film really shines. As was proved in Hardcore Henry, Ilya Naishuller knows how to direct great action scenes and here he does a great job at creating visceral and brutal action scenes, with Odenkirk and the stunt team doing excellent work in making the action scenes feel believable. There is never any point in the film where you struggle to follow what is going on and the sound design adds to the brutal nature of each action scene.
Overall, Nobody is a really fun action film that makes great use of Bob Odenkirk’s talents to make him a believable action star and is a good twist on the John Wick formula. I didn’t really go into too much detail here to avoid spoiling the film, but I had a blast watching this and it makes for a great bit of fun in the cinema.
My Rating: 4/5