There have been a lot of movies about hired assassins over the years. There's just something about their life style that seems to intrigue us. They're usually a mysterious bunch who keep to themselves and take pride in their work. Victor Maynard (Bill Nighy) is no different. He's an obsessive compulsive assassin who's been killing people for money for years. He's an old school hitman, who take pleasure in his work, but never really seems to relish in the killing. He studies French on his downtime, and lives in a large country house with plastic coverings encasing all the furniture.
Rose (Emily Blunt) is a thieving con artist who's come up with the perfect plan. She's pretending to sell Ferguson (Rupert Everett) a real Rembrandt. It's an ingenious scheme, and it works to an extent. When Ferguson finds out he's been ripped off he hires a hitman to do the job, which happens to be Victor. It seems, however, as Victor tails Rose through the city that he becomes somewhat enamored with her cavalier attitude toward stealing clothes, scarves, and just about anything else she can get her hands on without being noticed. After failing to kill her, Ferguson sends out some of his own goons to finish the job, but Victor intervenes before they're able to.
Tony (Rupert Grint) is caught in the middle of the action in a parking garage where everyone converges. They soon form an unlikely team, hop in a mini cooper and speed off, trying to out run the bad guys like Hector Dixon (Martin Freeman), another professional killer.
'Wild Target' is full of a great cast of British faces that us Americans all recognize. They're what make the movie enjoyable. Bill Nighy is always a hoot, no matter if he's playing a professional assassin or a man who's just been munched on by a zombie. As Victor Maynard, Nighy brings class to a classless profession. Blunt is energetic even though her character is slightly moronic. Grint is the same Ron Weasley worrier that he is in the 'Harry Potter' films, but it's still nice to see him branching out. I didn't know Ron Weasley smoked so much.
The plot is your fairly standard cat and mouse game as the group of do-gooders tries to elude the group of baddies. The dry British humor, coupled with the fun, carefree performances from each of the actors is what makes this movie worth watching. Seeing Martin Freeman and his pearly white, fake chompers made me laugh almost every time he smiled. Why he had them, I have no idea, but they were funny.
You may not have heard of 'Wild Target,' but if you're in the mood for a light-hearted, rambunctious British comedy then this is the movie for you.
The 1080p AVC-encoded image that brings 'Wild Target' to Blu-ray features a bold picture that's brimming with color and excitement. The movie's color palette plays with bright stunning primaries that dance on the screen. Blunt's wardrobe is overflowing with lively choices that pop on screen. Textures are perfectly rendered, from the intricacies of a parrot's feathers to the tight weave of a curtain hanging in a changing room, the detail here is top-notch.
Skin tones look perfectly natural. Blacks are calm, but never really reach a deep state. There was one darker scene in particular that harbored quite a bit of noise near the end. Overall, the detail is wonderful though. The closeups on the real and fake Rembrandt paintings reveal subtle differences, and visible individual paint spots. Plus, Emily Blunt in high-definition is always easy on the eyes.
'Wild Target' features a wide variety of sound effects in it's 5.1 DTS-HD lossless audio mix. Plenty of car crashes and gun fire to go around. Bullets whiz through the scenes, with panning effects place them perfectly as they move through the soundfield.
Surround work wonderfully here too, providing a lively atmosphere. There's one scene where Victor is sitting alone in his room. There's grunting coming from the left side of the soundstage which actually fooled me, my wife, and our dog. It was subtle at first, and instead of thinking it was the movie, we thought someone was grunting in the apartment adjacent to ours. Even our little dog looked in that direction wondering what was going on.
Dialogue is placed perfectly in the front and center channels and even as the actors talk fast with heavy accents, it's still easy to hear and understand every word they say.
I enjoyed 'Wild Target' for what it was, a madcap, zany story about a hitman wanting to retire, and the unlikely duo he picks up along the way. All of these well known British actors look like they're having fun, and none of them look like they're sulking around waiting for a paycheck. It's a light-hearted little comedy with a few laughs. The video and audio both have fantastic presentations. There's only one special feature, but I kind of expected that. This one is recommended for anyone who wants to have a bit of fun.