Bob Odenkirk came to my attention with his leading role in the TV series “Better Call Saul,” a spin-off of the super popular “Breaking Bad.” His first film role came with the 1993 film “Wayne’s World 2” in which he played “concert nerd.” Now, after nearly 30 years as a writer, actor, producer, and director, Odenkirk gets to star in a full-blown action flick. Stick with it kids, the climb to stardom often takes a while.
In the film, a secret government agency enforcer has retired to a quiet, middle-class life. Circumstances draw him out of his bucolic, anonymous family life and back into the world of violence. With a bang. If this seems a little like the storyline in the “John Wick” movies, there is a reason for it. The creator of the “John Wick” franchise is none other than “Nobody” scriptwriter Derek Kolstad. Further, the producer of “Nobody,” David Leitch directed “John Wick.” Leitch also directed “Atomic Blonde” and “Deadpool 2,” two of my favorite action flicks of recent vintage. Leitch worked for years as a stuntman. His films are known for their complex, rapid and violent fight scenes.
Connie Neilsen plays the wife of the retired enforcer. We have seen her a lot lately as Hippolyta, the queen of the amazons in the “Wonder Woman” films. Also appearing is RZA, once a rapper but now spread into acting and record production. The other famous face in “Nobody” is Christopher Lloyd, an actor with over two hundred acting credits. Lloyd got his first film role in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” back in 1975.
With the connection to the “John Wick” films, we might expect to see a lot of blood and bashing. We would be right. Russian-born director Ilya Naishuller also directed “Hardcore Harry,” a film that had little except violence. Like RZA, Naishuller started in music as the founder of “Biting Elbows,” a Russian rock group.
For those of us of a certain sensibility, this movie makes for maximum recreation. With the connection to the “John Wick” films we expect and we get a barge load of shooting, stabbing, bludgeoning, and whatnot, all done with style and momentum. Some of the gags are not necessarily physically possible, but we can enjoy them anyhow. Plus, with the director of “Deadpool 2” as a producer, we get some laugh-out-loud comic over-the-top moments as well. Now that’s entertainment.
“Nobody” runs for a too-short one hour and 32 minutes. It, naturally enough, has a strong R rating for loads of violence and terrible language. Please watch the ratings when thinking about which film you want your children to see. This entertaining and cathartic film gets a rousing four sawblades.
In “Better Call Saul” Bob Odenkirk plays a lawyer named Goodman. In “Piranha 3DD” Christopher Lloyd played a Mr. Goodman. Small world, no?