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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast Paced Action Packed True Story
KILLER ELITE is a true story taken from the book 'The Feather Men' by Sir Ranulph Fiennes, adapted for the screen by Matt Sherring, and directed with an eye toward speed by Gary McKendry. The bit of history that the film addresses is the aftermath of the Dhofar Rebellion launched in the province of Dhofar against the Sultanate of Muscat and Oman, which had British...
Published on January 13, 2012 by Grady Harp

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A convoluted action adventure time waster
This perfunctory action film opens in Mexico with a hit squad comprised of Jason Statham, Robert De Niro and Dominic Purcell taking out some high ranking guy in a limo. We don't know who he is (politician?, drug lord?) but the scene closes when Danny (Statham) comes face to face with the young son of the guy he just killed. I guess this is the critical point when Danny...
Published on February 25, 2012 by M. Oleson


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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast Paced Action Packed True Story, January 13, 2012
By 
KILLER ELITE is a true story taken from the book 'The Feather Men' by Sir Ranulph Fiennes, adapted for the screen by Matt Sherring, and directed with an eye toward speed by Gary McKendry. The bit of history that the film addresses is the aftermath of the Dhofar Rebellion launched in the province of Dhofar against the Sultanate of Muscat and Oman, which had British support, from 1962 to 1976. It ended with the defeat of the rebels, but the state of Oman had to be radically reformed and modernized to cope with the campaign. The fact that three sons of the Sheik of Oman were killed by the British leaving the Sheik with a strong need for revenge so that he can regain his kingdom by sending his remaining son to a safe land is the springboard for the film's plot.

Before the film's action begins, the Sheik has taken hired assassin Hunter (Robert De Niro) captive because he failed to kill the murderers of his three sons. The film opens in 1980 the exiled Sheik (with his remaining son Bakhait - Firass Dirani) hires Hunter's pupil Danny (Jason Statham), a retired member of Britain's Elite Special Air Service, to kill the three assassins of his sons. A private organization of ex SAS tasks men headed by Spike (Clive Owen) is assigned to protect the British assassins. Covering the globe from Australia to Paris, London and the Middle East, Danny and Hunter, two of the worlds' most elite operatives, are plunged into a highly dangerous game of cat and mouse - where the predators become the prey.

There is plenty of incredible action in the form of one-on-one fights between Statham and Owen, car chases, and other acts of derring-do to keep the film rolling. At times the plot gets muddy and some of the characters are not well defined - those played by Domenic Purcell, Aden Young, Ben Mendelsohn and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje in particular. And of course there is the requisite romance between Statham and Yvonne Strahovski, which helps soften the film periodically. But basically this is an action film; the main reason it is of such interest is the fact that it is based on a true story - a story whose history is shared in the closing credits. Definitely a film for Statham/De Niro/Owen fans! Grady Harp, January 12
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars There Are No Good Guys, January 14, 2012
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This review is from: Killer Elite (DVD)
With a cast that includes Jason Statham, Clive Owen and Robert DeNiro you would expect an exceptional film. It is a good film, filled with action.

This film is said to be based on fact and not fiction. It is far fetched in some ways, but with the recent assassination of a scientist in Iran, presumably by the Israelis or the CIA, I find it more believable. Two teams of ex-SAS men are trying to kill each other. Or, at least, Jason Statham, has been asked to kill four ex-SAS men, and to make it look like an accident. He agrees to this mission to save the life of his mentor, played by Robert De Niro. Clive Owen, is from a group of men called the 'Feather Men' who are hired to protect ex-SAS men from retribution. A little convoluted, but all in all simple to follow. Each team has become hired killers after their stints in the SAS, and this is not a game for amateurs. De Niro is being held hostage by a sheik in Oman. Statham travels all over th eworld to hunt for his prey. He has a team that is first rate, and some of the action is complicated and breath taking. What holds this film together are the characters and the plot. We can see the action in many films, but the plot and the acting here are superb. All of the killers realize it is their professionalism that keeps them going. Face to face combat and high technology are all a part of this play.

I liked this film, and as a spy novel/film afficianado, much of it seemed realistic. Of course, the director/writer took liberites, but that is necessary in this type of film. There is a little bit of love interest, and that creates a huge problem for one of the men,. The rest of the teams do not mention family, and it would seem in this kind of world, loners would be the best killers. I would have expected this film to do much better at the box office. I only heard about it once it was on DVD, and I wonder about the back story.

Recommended. prisrob 01-14-12

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52 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, November 29, 2011
This review is from: Killer Elite (DVD)
In 1980, a wealthy Omani business man in exile hires retired contract killer Danny, played by Janson Statham, to kill the SAS soldiers who killed his sons. A private organization of ex SAS men tasks Spike, played by Clive Owen, with protecting them. Unlike most action movies this one has a good plot, and is perfectly cast. It also contains one of the best fight scenes on film.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining thriller with a top notch cast--this is NOT a remake of "The Killer Elite", February 18, 2012
This review is from: Killer Elite (DVD)
Although it shares nearly the same title as Sam Peckinpah's film, "Killer Elite" beyond the fact that it involves government affiliated assassins has nothing to do with the film. "The Killer Elite" (Peckinpah's film) is based on the novel "Monkey in The Middle" by Robert Rostand while THIS film is based on a "nonfiction" book by Sir Ranulph Fiennes called "The Feather Men".

Mercenary assassins Danny Bryce (Jason Statham), Davies (Dominic Purcell), and Meier (Aden Young)must save their colleague Hunter (Robert DeNiro)who is taken prisoner for a failed assassination. If Bryce, Davies and Meier don't complete Hunter's mission (for which he was promised $6 million) to assassinate the killers of the Sheikh Amr's sons, they'll kill him. Complicating Bryce's mission are "the Feather Men" a group of former SAS members who protect their own. Their enforcer Spike Logan (Clive Owen) is sent to investigate and prevent the killing of its members.

A well made thriller from first time feature director Gary McKendry, "Killer Elit" positively bristles with energy and features something a bit unusual for a thriller of this type--actual character development. It's not enough that the action sequences are well designed, many unique and well shot the fact that McKendry and screenwriter Matt Sherring create a compelling thriller with a solid story and solid performances. There have been some compliants about the various subplots in the film slowing down the action with exposition and I'd disagree. I found it to be a nice combination of the parranoid thrillers from the 1970's and early 80's combined with the more recent action driven ones. I suspect that those complaining about the exposition don't care for those more paranoid spy thrillers from another era.

The one flaw with the film is that it could have been trimmed a bit but that's a minor complaint at best. The characters, acting and action sequences more than make up for a slightly bloated running time. At it's best "Killer Elite" reminds me of some of John Frankenheimer's strong later thrillers.

The DVD looks quite nice with a solid presentation. Colors are on the cool side (and reflects the original theatrical presentation of the movie). Audio is extremely active with a nice, immersive 5.1 mix.

It would have been nice to have a more special features such as a commentary track unfortunately all we get are 13 deleted scenes.
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34 of 47 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars boom boom boom, November 26, 2011
By 
don't know what the bad reviewers are talking about, this, in my opinion, is a 5 star movie. action packed from the beggining to the end, plus it's in the 80's. i liked it

UPDATE : after watching it for the second time, it's a 4 star movie
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A convoluted action adventure time waster, February 25, 2012
By 
This perfunctory action film opens in Mexico with a hit squad comprised of Jason Statham, Robert De Niro and Dominic Purcell taking out some high ranking guy in a limo. We don't know who he is (politician?, drug lord?) but the scene closes when Danny (Statham) comes face to face with the young son of the guy he just killed. I guess this is the critical point when Danny decides to retire.

A year later in 1981, Danny has moved to Australia and taken up housekeeping with Anne (Yvonne Strahovski, TV's "Chuck"). She's gorgeous of course, but you wouldn't know it here. She is pretty much wallpaper in a roomy cotton dress most of the time. Danny must travel to Oman to rescue his friend Hunter (De Niro) who is being held by a sheik. So here's the deal. The sheik will release Hunter if Danny will fulfill Hunter's original job. That is to kill 3 British SAS (Special Forces) officers that were responsible for killing the sheik's 3 sons during the conflicts in the late 1970's. This is never clear when or why. Just that they are dead and the Brits did it.

But, these guys can't just be killed. They must confess first and Danny must provide proof. Danny gets his old buddy Davies (Purcell, the best thing in this movie) and another guy (Aden Young) to help out. There's a $6 million reward if they pull it off plus the release of Hunter. My head starts to hurt trying to figure out who is on which side. Something about a double top secret SAS squad controlled by some old farts in suits.

Somehow Clive Owen is involved as the main foe of Danny. But then Spike (yes, that's Owen's character) is all for Queen and country. Spike is also the only one who has a chance of beating Danny in hand to hand combat. This movie is a convoluted mess. Even with a stellar cast this film is just a time waster. Statham is as good as it gets in action adventure and Owen is always good. But De Niro is miscast and is obviously here for a paycheck. They are not the problem. Based on true events, the entire concept is just an incoherent bore the way it is written.

The Blu ray disc is sharp and clear. The DTS-HD Master Audio is solid if not spectacular. I was expecting a bit more for this type of movie. Special features are spare. Some deleted scenes and not much else.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Story of Retribution, July 29, 2014
This review is from: Killer Elite (DVD)
Killer Elite lines up a great cast for this "based on a true story" movie. The long and short of it is an exiled Omani Sheikh hires a mercenary to kill the killers of his three dead sons to restore honor to his family, especially his surviving son. The killers are all British SAS forces which have to be tracked down one by one.

There are a load of liberties taken, especially when it comes to firearms used verses what was actually available for the period. That also shows when the movie is set in 1980 and a Pontiac Fiero which entered production in 1984 is shown at the beginning of the movie. Otherwise, it's definitely a guy movie.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Surprised by This Movie., April 10, 2012
I watched this movie on a laptop, not like that's got anything to do with it, other than it wasn't the sort of movie I'd usually watch at home. I was travelling and had been lent a copy after reading the Feather Men. It was one of those movies that I felt you would be able to take or leave but no so. It was so exciting from the get go and not the usual blood and guts 007 exciting that we've become so accustomed to. It was earth, real. Clive Owen and Robert De Niro seem to have passed some acting gems over to Jason Statham, who does a great job in this.
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26 of 37 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Better than the original but not quite "elite"., December 10, 2011
By 
J. Bradley (Charleston, WV USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Within two weeks of September 2011 we had as many remakes of Peckinpah's weakest era of movies - "Straw Dogs" and then "Killer Elite". At least this pretty much just takes the title and runs with it. It mixes in a bit of history from the late 70's and early 80's (this movie takes place in 1980) involving "The Feather Men" an organization within the British government that, using their "light touch" on geopolitics, were involved in the killing of a shiek's sons in Oman. In this version Jason Statham is a mercenary hired by a dying shiek to kill the British SAS guys who killed his sons. This way the family honor will be returned and his one living son can take his place in the hierarchy and the British government will ultimately reap the political and economic rewards for helping to bring all this about. He accomplishes these tasks but now, Clive Owen, playing the SAS guy employed by "Feather Men", wants to get back at Statham's character for killing three of his SAS guys. The movie's a pretty good mix of more believable "spy stuff" and action that's still pretty hyper-stylized. I kept thinking about movies like "The Wild Geese" and "Dogs of War" which came out about the same time this movie takes place and it struck me how this IS kind of like those movies but with the hand-held camera "this is happening right now" Jason Bourne type action, from this current era. All in all I don't come away with an overall strong impression of what makes this movie stand out from the other action movies this year. "Hanna" was sort of an "art action movie" and "Colombiana" was a slicked-up, modern grindhouse movie. This has some great sequences like Statham fighting off two guys while cuffed to a chair, but this mix of Bourne era movie action and post-Watergate/pre Iran Contra conspiracy stuff ultimately just all blurs together. The parts are greater than the whole. Still though as remakes of 70's Peckinpah go, this one could be seen, as the more elite compared to it's original, but then even that wasn't quite at the top its form.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars are their any writers left?, July 11, 2013
Warning SPOILERS! Killer Elite boasts a terrific cast, a decent budget, and a case where clearly the WHOLE is less than the sum of its parts. The biggest problem is the storyline is so stupid and ridiculous that it leaves the viewer with no one to care about. Good guys killing good guys to help a terrorist get revenge.Please!!!!!! Why couldn't a plan be constructed simply to free the one hostage, with all the resources these guys had at their disposal and Statham's character disinterest in money??? Instead they go off and kill SAS soldiers who serve their country. The whole premise was such a bunch of ultra left wing horse manure and a waste of an opportunity to make an excellent film. Is this type of pandering to the "we hate the Military" crowd necessary to get a film financed these days? Pathetic.
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Killer Elite
Killer Elite by Gary McKendry (DVD - 2012)
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