The International (2009)

How much does one fantastic sequence count? Can it save an otherwise so-so movie? This is the case with The International, a plodding conspiracy thriller that is shockingly action-free sans two sequences. One sequence is a lackluster foot chase that serves as a frustrating anticlimactic climax. The other is a gripping shootout inside the Guggenheim museum in New York City between Clive Owen and some mercenaries. It is a fantastic piece of action cinema, expertly handled so that the geography is clear, the stakes get more fraught, and the twists and turns arise naturally. It feels like something out of one of the Bourne movies except with extra firepower. It is a terrific ten-minute sequence; the trouble is that is comes at about minute 70 and there isn’t much worth watching afterwards. The International is slow and fairly uninteresting. The flick thinks that by taking its time the movie will be more intriguing and involving. It?s not. The movie has one good sequence and it places it directly in the middle, just enough to snap you out of a stupor and get your hopes up that something equally entertaining will reemerge later. It doesn’t. The International is a snooze-worthy conspiracy thriller that just careens toward an incomplete ending. Take my advice: zip to the 70-minute mark and enjoy what you can.

Nate’s Grade: C


About natezoebl

One man. Many movies. I am a cinephile (which spell-check suggests should really be "epinephine"). I was told that a passion for movies was in his blood since I was conceived at a movie convention. While scientifically questionable, I do remember a childhood where I would wake up Saturday mornings, bounce on my parents' bed, and watch Siskel and Ebert's syndicated TV show. That doesn't seem normal. At age 17, I began writing movie reviews and have been unable to stop ever since. I was the co-founder and chief editor at (2007-2014) and now write freelance. I have over 1400 written film reviews to my name and counting. I am also a proud member of the Central Ohio Film Critics Association (COFCA) since 2012. In my (dwindling) free time, I like to write uncontrollably. I wrote a theatrical genre mash-up adaptation titled "Our Town... Attacked by Zombies" that was staged at my alma mater, Capital University in the fall of 2010 with minimal causalities and zero lawsuits. I have also written or co-written sixteen screenplays and pilots, with one of those scripts reviewed on industry blog Script Shadow. Thanks to the positive exposure, I am now also dipping my toes into the very industry I've been obsessed over since I was yea-high to whatever people are yea-high to in comparisons.

Posted on August 5, 2009, in 2009 Movies and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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