Critic’s Rating : 3.0 / 5
The Contractor Movie Review : Generic but watchable, thanks to the cast
The Contractor Review: After serving his country, James Harper gets discharged due to a failed drug test. Now left without any healthcare benefits or pension, he signs up as a contractor for a private organization, based on the recommendation of his veteran friend Mike (Ben Foster). Unfortunately, James is left to fend for himself when the assignment goes completely wrong.
Simultaneously predictable and yet not wholly unwatchable, ‘The Contractor’ is an uneven action flick. Focused on James Harper’s moral predicament, the theme of abandoned veterans isn’t particularly new in Hollywood. Still, at least Chris Pine makes the most of it. He infuses the role with much credibility, and his scenes with Ben Foster are particularly effective. Sadly, their screen time together is limited. While they do their best to establish the kinship between their characters, an inevitable twist presents a gaping hole in the plot. Although, it’s only one of many issues with the slack screenplay. The story takes ample time to get going, and when it does take off, it rushes to tie up loose ends rather than make cohesive sense.
Amongst the supporting cast, Eddie Marsan appears in a brief yet effective cameo as Virgil. The film could have done with more of Kiefer Sutherland, whose no-nonsense veteran Rusty is as expected. Gillian Jacobs is relegated to James’ wife Brianne, in a stereotypical role as a woman tormented by her husband’s career and decisions. Despite being the most important female character in the film, Jacobs barely gets to do much of value.
‘The Contractor’ is gifted with a cast that strives to enhance the material in hand. But director Tarik Saleh doesn’t challenge them beyond the derivative and predictable script that eventually does them, and us, a disservice.