Action fans will have plenty to enjoy this weekend on Netflix as Interceptor makes its debut. Elsa Pataky leads as US Army Captain JJ Collins who will be forced to use her years of training and experience to defend a remote nuclear missile interceptor station from a former intelligence officer and his crew to stop a coordinated attack that could cost countless lives. Now if you’re in your late 30’s or older, you may think this all sounds a bit familiar. That’s because it is. This film feels ripped out of the 90’s, and I loved every bit of this sleek tightly-paced action flick.
Does that mean Interceptor is a great film? No. But it’s a capable movie that shows just enough self-awareness in the fact it wasn’t reinventing the wheel merely putting its own twist on it. A commanding musical score. A world threatening plot with one lone hero on the job. A charismatic villain with clouded motives. It’s all something Steven Seagal or Wesley Snipes would have headlined back in the 90’s.
So, it was awesome to see this given to a strong female lead because Elsa Pataky was everything this character and the film needed. She delivered a Van Damme-esque level performance in terms of balancing pure ass-kicking and emotional charisma that rides the line of endearing melodrama. There have been many female led action films in recent years and it’s safe to say Pataky has a place in the genre because it was a treat to see her dishing out beatings and breaking bones. She took more than a few hits as well and the determination in her performance popped nicely on screen during the action set-pieces.
The story progression doesn’t veer much from the Die Hard formula but it works delivering a fun, adrenaline pumping ride as Pataky’s Collins fends off a crew of heavies to try and save the day. The pace is quick, the run-time is short, and it’s filled with appealing fight-sequences. The choreography is fast, gritty, and delightfully violent and Pataky sells every move to fill the movie with crowd pleasing kills. Sure the dialogue is a bit hammy and on-the-nose, but not every action film needs to be a Tenet.
Sometimes you want to sit back and enjoy a thrilling movie with appealing characters, plenty of gunplay, showdowns, and a plotline that can make you care about it all, and Interceptor provides that. I was on edge, rooting for Collins to save the world and I enjoyed the spectacle of each over-the-top moment. Luke Bracey comes in to land a serviceable villain. Bracey’s always been a tad hit-or-miss with me, but despite sort of falling into the tropes of the character-type, I found his scenes with Pataky delivered effective spots of guilty-pleasure tension and posturing as hero and villain played cat and mouse. This isn’t a film that will make much noise come award season, but that doesn’t mean the ride it takes the viewer on isn’t a complete one worth checking out with a big bucket of popcorn and your beverage of choice.
Anthony J. Digioia II © 2022 SilverScreen Analysis. All Rights Reserved.