Making the Bad Guys Pay
Release Date: March 23, 2007
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Danny Glover,
Kate Mara, Michael Peña,
Elias Koteas, and Ned Beatty
Genre: Action Thriller/Political
Audience: Older teenagers and adults
Runtime: 126 minutes
Distributor: Paramount Pictures
Director: Antoine Fuqua
Executive Producer: Erik Howsam and Mark Johnson
Producer: Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Ric
Writer: Jonathan Lemkin
Address Comments To:Brad Grey, Chairman/CEO
(A Viacom company)
5555 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038-3197
Phone: (323) 956-5000
The movie opens with Gunnery Sergeant Bob Lee Swagger, one of the top three snipers in the world, secretly working in Ethiopia to stop some rebels from attacking an oil pipeline. When the action gets too hot, the people running the mission abandon Swagger and his buddy, who gets killed.
Three years later, Swagger has retired to an isolated mountain cabin, where he lives and hunts with his beer-drinking dog. One day, Swagger gets a visit from retired Colonel Isaac Johnson, played by Danny Glover. Johnson convinces Swagger to help the government foil a possible assassination plot against the President. Col. Johnson and his men are setting Swagger up, however. Eventually, a wounded Swagger finds himself on the run, accused of killing an Ethiopian Bishop who was with the President during the alleged assassination attempt.
Hunted at every turn, Swagger gets help from his dead buddy's widow, a rookie FBI agent risking his career, and an elderly conspiracy theorist with a special knowledge of weapons. The clock is ticking as Swagger tries to smoke out and destroy the forces behind Col. Johnson's plot.
SHOOTER is a rousing action movie, until it gets lost in wacky conspiracy theories about a Machiavellian United States Senator working for oil interests exploiting Africa and misusing government power, including America's espionage and military bureaucracies. The conspirators easily manipulate the FBI through most of the story, until the Attorney General in charge of the Justice Dept. learns the truth. Thus, the movie has a left-wing spin. In addition, although Col. Johnson's villainous character has some depth, the evil Senator's character is a bit of a caricature. Apparently, in Hollywood, there are only right-wing and corporate conspiracies, never left-wing, anti-capitalist ones. The movie, which is based on a character created by a Washington Post movie critic known for occasionally criticizing some liberal movies, ameliorates its political slant by making its hero a patriotic, honorable ex-soldier. The soldier makes the bad guys pay for their crimes in the end. Mark Wahlberg is convincing enough as the hero here that moviegoers will want to see him in more action roles like this one.
SHOOTER also contains very strong violence with some blood. In the most violent scene, for instance, part of a man's hand and his arm are shot off. There is also plenty of strong and very strong foul language in SHOOTER. Thus, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution.
SHOOTER is a rousing action movie, until it gets lost in wacky, left-wing conspiracy theories about a Machiavellian United States Senator working for oil interests exploiting Africa and misusing government power, including America's espionage and military bureaucracies. The conspirators easily manipulate the FBI bureaucracy through most of the story. In addition, although Col. Johnson's villainous character has some depth, the evil senator's character is a bit of a caricature. SHOOTER also contains very strong violence and plenty of strong foul language. Thus, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution.