Hutch Mansell (Bob Odenkirk) fails to defend himself or his family when two thieves break into his suburban home one night. The aftermath of the incident soon strikes a match to his long-simmering rage. In a barrage of fists, gunfire, and squealing tires, Hutch must now save his wife and son from a dangerous adversary — and ensure that he will never be underestimated again.
It feels like it has been years since I last saw a new release action movie and actually had a great time with it. 2020 cinema really didn’t have anything in that sort of genre to offer. Instead, we got a whole bunch of dramas, thrillers, comedies, and horror movies, so I’m actually okay with that. However, I have to admit that I do miss the feeling of watching a badass character beat the daylights out of a bunch of baddies.
To be honest, the last time I saw a film like this that I enjoyed was John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, which was an overall good time at the movies, even if it is the weakest entry in the franchise to date.
The wait for Keanu Reeves to reprise the titular role is still a ways off yet, but don’t worry – filmmaker Ilya Naishuller and John Wick series creator and screenwriter Derek Kolstad have got us covered with their latest feature Nobody, which feels remarkably like a John Wick movie, despite the fact that nothing has been set in stone for that quite yet.
Bob Odenkirk is somebody that you probably recognize best for his role as Saul Goodman in the hit television series Breaking Bad, as well as its spinoff which some argue is actually a little stronger, Better Call Saul. But as wonderfully charismatic and powerful as he is in those two shows, Odenkirk never seems to get too many awards for his role which is a big shame. I think he is definitely one of the most underrated actors working today.
And although I will always have a special place in my heart for his work as Saul, his performance here as Hutch “Nobody” Mansell is genuinely riveting. For the first thirty minutes of the film, he really does come across as your ordinary working man. We actually see him kissing his wife and kids goodbye before going to work every day. We see him working out. We see him going to bed. He lives a normal life.
But, when riding a bus one day and when he notices an innocent woman may be assaulted by a group of strangers, Hutch simply cannot sit by and watch. He takes matters into his own hands. He first makes a verbal threat to the guys which results in them all laughing in his face. Why? They’re probably thinking “Who does this guy think he is? He’s just some nobody”. And while that may be true, that doesn’t mean that a nobody can’t beat you senseless. Because that’s exactly what happens. It’s one of the earliest scenes in the film and one that I will remember for a very, very long time.
After this scene, the movie catapults into a non-stop thrill-ride with Hutch having to be on the lookout for more trouble from a group of people who really want to kill him. Just when you think Nobody is about to put its foot down on the brake to slow down a bit, it instead puts its foot down on the gas.
It also helps that the fight choreography here is helmed beautifully. The stunt team here does some truly phenomenal work and it just made me angry again that the Academy Awards do not recognize stunt work yet. I really hope this changes soon because the people that made Nobody‘s insane fight scenes come to life absolutely need praise for it.
And plus the film just looks beautiful in general. The entire time I was watching it I was wondering why it looked so fabulous, and then I found out that it was shot by the same man that served as the director of photography on both Hereditary and Midsommar – Pawel Pogorzelski. So, that explains it.
Nobody is quite the predictable movie in the long run, though. You have an idea of how it’s going to end fairly quickly, and whatever your idea is, it’s probably correct. But none of that changes how much fun this film is. It looks like we may be getting another movie in this universe someday, and if that is indeed true, you better believe I’ll be there on day one to see it.
Overall Grade: A-
MPAA Rating: R for strong violence and bloody images, language throughout, and brief drug use
Directed by: Ilya Naishuller
Distributed by: Universal Pictures
Release Date: March 26, 2021
Running Time: 92 minutes