Most helpful positive review
43 of 45 people found the following review helpful
The hitman cometh, the hitman goeth
on February 16, 2011
WILD TARGET (2009) is one of the most enjoyable, relaxing and hilarious films I have ever seen. The British have a way with this kind of black comedy that we have yet to perfect, though we try.
The legendary assassin Victor Maynard (Bill Nighy in yet another cool-as-a-cucumber role of a lifetime) is reaching a midlife crisis. He falls for his latest hit, young swindler Rose (Emily Blunt in a role that actually fits her well). As she throws him off his game initially, he begins to like her immensely.
A fateful encounter in a parking garage introduces them to each other and to Tony (a sweet Rupert Grint), a bisexual pothead garage attendant who saves first the life of Rose, then Victor. They flee together, and a sort of sweet madness ensues.
It is not what you'd expect, and were it not for occasional foul scenes (which we can bear with a guffaw) I'd recommend such caliber of comedy for children. Sadly, black comedy of this caliber is not for children's innocent eyes. But here I'll leave this fantastic film, for you to discover and judge.
The cast is rounded out by crooked art collector Ferguson (Rupert Everett, appearing apparently because he needs the work) and the immortal Aileen Atkins as Victor's former-assassin mother and first teacher. (In a bit of a snit, she excoriates Victor for his crisis: "A Beretta! The gun of princes! For your SEVENTH birthday!") Also moving to me was Victor's white cat Snowy, who has the most wonderful MEOW.
With all the great talent here and others whose names I'm too tired to mention, I have to say a word about Rupert Grint. Rupert's a handsome, rising star with a flair for sweetness, drama and comedic skills I have often compared to those of Buster Keaton. Sometimes I wonder if old Buster from Kansas and Rupert from Stevenage are somehow related.
Rupert is the busiest of the HARRY POTTER 'children', with two excellent films under his belt already (CHERRYBOMB and DRIVING LESSONS). This, his third major film with major work to show for it, is his third film off the POTTER reservation. Here's a toast: a long and successful career for Rupert!
And a long, cult-classic status for WILD TARGET ... one of the best films (for its genre) that I have ever seen.
WILD TARGET is an English remake of the French film "Cible émouvante" (1993) - which I am now anxious to see. I understand the great Jean Rochefort plays "Victor Meynard" in this original version.