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Accuracy • Independence • Integrity

August 20, 2017   |   Ithaca, NY

Accent

Cautious direction ruins revenge flick

Even with seasoned actors, “Colombiana” is nothing more than a vapid romance, scattered plot and a few odd story sequences that coalesce into a movie that falls short of its potential.

The film follows Cataleya (Zoe Saldana), a woman from Colombia who vows revenge on the drug lord who murdered her parents when she was young. To do so she travels to America and becomes an assassin.

Director Olivier Megaton ruins this promising story by playing it safe and sticking to the typical Hollywood revenge plot.

Saldana’s on-screen love interest Danny (Michael Vartan), an artist she sometimes sleeps with but shows no emotional attraction to, does nothing to develop the story. It seems like Megaton found a Hollywood movie checklist and only included the romance to check off one of the required boxes. The  film would be better off without the pairing completely.

Saldana, an actress with experience in films like “Star Trek,” “Avatar” and “The Terminal,” is more than competent on-screen. Despite an abundance of scenes where Cataleya simply says she wants revenge, Saldana makes her actual combat sequences entertaining and believable — one of the few saving graces in the movie.

But by the end of the 107-minute film, the audience will probably still want to avenge some of that lost time.

“Colombiana” was directed by Olivier Megaton and written by Robert Mark Kamen and Luc Besson.