I was early for the showing so I had time to buy popcorn. Yay! I was so early that I had to wait in the ladies' room for a couple of minutes so I couldn't watch the film's ending. I got out when the washroom started to get crowded and I plopped myself to a seat in the orchestra. (I learned from watching The Incredible Hulk that you'd more likely appreciate the Dolby sound in the orchestra, instead of the balcony, of SM Cinemas. Plus it's cheaper. Ironic, isn't it? Or perhaps it's just here at SM Clark. Duh.)
Since it was the last full show, I didn't immediately munch on my cheese popcorn (though I wanted to already) because there'd still be the national anthem from ABS-CBN. It's because I don't like it when I stop in the middle of my munching. Hehe.
Enough with the boring preliminaries. Let's now move on to Wanted, shall we?
Seldom have I seen action films that are narrated. And in this case, not just narrated, but a first-person narration by the protagonist himself. Just seeing the first scenes of the movie made me agree with Alex' description of the movie --- insane. It was insane. Really. Not just comic insane but dark insane. Particularly the slomo of grossness and stupidity up close. I was laughing and wondering at the same time. Wondering where the seriousness of assassination will come in the suffering boredom of Wesley Gibson's (James McAvoy) normal everyday life.
Until the beautiful glass-shattering jump. Utterly beautiful yet, again, insane. I don't believe someone can just jump off a building to the other by doing a long jump similar with the Olympics'. But I liked the incredulity and incredibility of the stunt. From that scene, "X marked the spot" in my adrenaline. I was piqued.
I was near to peeing but I couldn't go because Fox (Angelina Jolie) just came out of nowhere. This was the scene I was waiting for because I saw the mind-blowing (literally mind-blowing, if an inch was amiss) stunt in the trailer. I loved it when Jolie calmly laid her head back while she was in-between her sexy red Viper and a passing truck. It was an embodiment of the phrase, "That was close!"
So here comes the meat of the story. Wesley finds out that his long lost father is a member of a group of assassins called The Fraternity. However, his father was killed by Cross (Thomas Kretschmann), a fellow member of The Fraternity who betrayed their group and started off killing them one by one.
In the following scenes, we see Wesley transform from loser to fighter (which reminds me of Peter Parker turned Spiderman) as he undergoes an intensive bloody training. Answering his long search for identity gained him the confidence and strength to be in control of his then-measly life. Before, he sought for identity, now he seeks for revenge. But in the end, was he certain of the life he chose? That's for you to find out. ;)
As I describe to my friends, Wanted is an insane bloodbath. Everything's insane --- the plot especially the twist, the characters especially Wesley, the stunts especially the glass-shattering jump as I've noted above, the effects especially the curved bullets (iluvit!). The insanity was because you don't see this kind in a usual film. Thus I loved every insane bit of it and Wanted joins my Next-To-Favorites List. Meanwhile, the term "bloodbath" is self-explanatory. Well, not all scenes contain blood but you'd end up seeing it all over. I usually squirm at gross blood effects but here, though I was still squirmish, I found it appropriate, beautiful and at times, weird as it may seem, sexy. I must be insane as well.
I wandered through Wanted's official site and learned some surprising facts, aside from acquiring the photos in this post. I learned that McAvoy was Mr. Tumnus, the Faun in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Also, the director Timur Bekmambetov is from Kazakhstan and was the director of Night Watch. The movie was an adaptation of a comic book series done by Mark Millar and J.G. Jones. (I recommend you to read Jones' bio under the site's Cast and Crew.) Therefore I have to recognize Bekmambetov for his new approach in filming and Millar and Jones' dark minds. I'm already thinking if I can get a copy of the comic book. ^^
I found a good review from Rolling Stones about this movie and read some negative comments stating that everything was mindless. But that's the point! In order to enjoy Wanted, don't think. It wasn't meant for deep thought (though there are moral bits scattered along) but for a dark playground in your mind. We think we need to find reason and sensibility in our lives but we don't see that sometimes we act as senseless as the purpose of The Fraternity's Loom of Fate.
So if you're into "guns, guts and gore", as my friend put it, I definitely recommend you to watch it. Four stars out of five!