Posted Sep 20 2018
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Mile 22 - This Movie Knows Bangs, Doesn't Know Rocks

Dir: Peter Berg

Starring Mark Wahlberg, Lauren Cohan, Iko Uwais, Ronda Rousey, John Malkovich

“Stop monologuing you bipolar fuck” – as said by John Malkovich in an unconvincing wig – is pretty much the highlight of Mile 22, the fourth movie in the on-going Wahlberg/Berg cinematic romance that has yet to deliver anything truly satisfying. This, however, shows the buddy-buddy duo moving so quickly, maybe they didn’t have time to stop and realise how bad this actually is.

Wahlberg is on supreme irritation mode as a off the books secret ops expert whose totally one-dimensional character is completely defined by the fact he talks really fast (all the time!) and constantly flicks a rubber band against his wrist to feel pain – surely a contender for the “MOST IRRITATING SUPPOSED EXCSUE FOR A REAL CHARACTER TRAIT EVER! AWARD!!!”

It is the job of Wahlberg and his team (mostly The Walking Dead’s Lauren Cohan – character defined by being a bit sweary) to transport valuable informant Iko Uwais to his flight to freedom, which is 22 miles away (geddit?) Along the way, dozens of bad guys show up and get all shooty-shooty, while things blow up and go all bangy-bangy. In other words – it’s like Bruce Willis having to transport Mos Def 16 Blocks – but nowhere like as entertaining.

As ever Berg’s sense of action directing is to edit everything to beyond an inch of its life, substituting capturing chaos for bona fide ability at conveying a story, and his recurring leading man’s raison d’etre is to try and out run him verbally. Really, Wahlberg is so determined to race through his dialogue that you very quickly just stop hearing everything he’s saying. Not that there’s anything worth listening to. Quick everyone – go “Boom” again – and they’ll never notice.

It may have a mercifully short running time, but it still feels like a long, long 22 Miles. And when the ending does arrive, it is so abrupt and unsatisfying that you can’t help but go “Is that it?”

 

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