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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Aug 15, 2021



‘THE HITMAN’S BODYGUARD’, an action comedy with the odd pairing of Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson, was a big hit in 2017, so we’re not surprised that it now has a sequel, “The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard”, with the character of Salma Hayek as Jackson’s wife now also included in the title.

Thiis is the kind of movie that critics love to skewer, calling it foolish, silly, boring, etc. It’s like they actually expect it to be of the pang-award variety that will be nominated in the Oscars and exhibited in prestigious international film festivals. 

Ryan as Michael Bryce is suspended from being a bodyguard after a client dies during his watch and his psychiatrist advises him to have a vacation in Italy. 

He’s lazing around in Capri when out of the blue, Salma Hayek as Sonia, the wife of Jackson as the hitman Dairus Kincaid, suddenly pops up with armed men pursuing her and Bryce helps her to elude them.

Sonia says she needs his help because her husband has been abducted by some bad guys. 

So he reluctantly joins forces with her and they do get to save Darius, but an interpol cop, Bobby O’Neill (Frank Grillo), intercepts them and asks their help to find a Greek terrorist.

The film’s main villain is Aristotle Papadopoulos (Antonio Banderas), who wants to destroy all the electric installations in Europe after the European union imposed some sanctions on Greece. 

In return, Bryce can get his license back as a bodyguard while Darius’ name will be cleared so the law won’t go after him anymore.

On their way to get Aristotle, the new three stooges figure in more comic shenanigans, with Ryan Reynolds as the fall guy. 

He’s the one who’s always getting hurt and taking the brunt of the physical jokes that give him multiple bruises and concussions from which he recovers so easily and miraculously.

When they get stranded, Bryce reluctantly asks the help of his father, Michael Bryce Sr. (Morgan Freeman). 

Before you can ask how come he’s got a black dad, it’s quickly explained that Bryce Sr. is actually just his stepdad, who’s also a hotshot bodyguard during his prime.

There’s a twist in this plot element and ultimately, the tres amigos are captured by Aristole and his henchmen. More twist in the plot when it’s revealed that Sonia was once Aristotle’s girlfriend and he was once sincerely in love with her but she only conned him. 

Bryce and Dairus manage to escape but Sonia remains with Aristotle, who’s now preparing to finish his goal of destroying the European electrical power grid. 

Will Bryce and Darius still get to stop him while they’re drilling the power grid buried in the middle of the sea?

That’s a rhetorical question, of course.  At the outset, let’s just say that the movie resorts so much to vulgar language and lots of profanity to get laughs, so it might be rough for some viewers who’s finer sensibilities might be offended. 

Salma Hayek’s brazen Sonia is particularly foul-mouthed you’d want to rinse her mouth with chlorox. But there’s no doubt she, Ryan and Jackson have hilarious on-screen chemistry and they make the most of the amusingly written script.

There’s also plenty of big action set pieces, some of them, just like the very broad, slapstick humor, a bit over the top. 

But this is to be expected in this kind of action-comedy hijinks, specially now that the lethal odd couple of the first movie have become a deadly trio in this sequel. 

Salma as the fiery Latina heroine is the unlikely third wheel since all she wants is simply to have a honeymoon with her husband so they can have their own baby. 

In fairness to Salma, she can deliver all her dirty, raunchy lines with absolute conviction, no matter how absurd they may sound. Her reunion with Banderas reminds us of the “Desperado” films they made before where they showed great chemistry. 

Banderas plays a Greek here but don’t question his accent anymore. Just enjoy the ride, along with the sights of some beautiful European locations.

So there, if you didn’t find the first movie, “The Hitman’s Bodyguard”, entertaining at all, then skip “The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” as you’d probably think it didn’t deserve a sequel. 

But if you found the first flick a blast, then watch this flawed but still funny new screen outing, specially if you’re a fan of Ryan Reynolds' rare combination of leading man good looks and self-deprecating sardonic kind of humor.