Those Who Wish Me Dead
How the fuck does Those Who Wish Me Dead have a 62% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes?! I get that we're only just starting to shake off the Curse of Covid and movie theaters are still a barren wasteland when it comes to first-run flicks, but how starved are filmgoers . . . and lesser critics alike . . . that they've convinced themselves that this direct-to-video tripe is actually good?
Angelina "We're Not Worthy" Jolie used to be cool and the biggest of A-Listers. Then she decided to settle down and raise a United Colors of Benetton brood, and like so many other hapless saps she lost her edge. At least it would appear. I pray to the ghost of Gia Marie Carangi that it ain't actually so.
After crushing it in edgy roles throughout her early career in films like Gia, Girl, Interrupted, and Gone in 60 Seconds, Jolie settled into superstardom as Lara Croft in a couple of Tomb Raiders before jamming out as an action star for a bit. Then, inevitably, she made some duds, banked some easy voice actor cash for the Kung Fu Panda jawns, tried her hand producing and directing some "important" movies that nobody saw, and then, for the most part, kind of dropped off the face of the Earth.
What could have possessed her to choose Those Who Wish Me Dead as a "comeback" vehicle? Other than easy money, of course. For an actress who's always pushed the envelope of the craft, who's always been as smart as she was sexy in virtually all of her performances, seeing her in this aimless, feckless fuckness breaks ol' Cinemavenger's black heart.
Jolie plays Hanna, a smoke jumper, which is a firefighter who parachutes into the middle of forest fires. Does she ever do that in this movie? Nope. Does anyone? Nope. What the ass?! Hannah is haunted by the deaths of some people who wandered into a forest fire. I'm not sure why, because if you're too stupid not to wander into a forest fire then your genes don't deserve to be conserved.
Bad guys are trying to kill the son of a forensic accountant (WTF?), and after the kid finds Hannah in the woods she reluctantly agrees to try to keep him alive. Against trained killers. And the forest fire those killers started.
I'll always love you, Angie, but you are way the fuck better than this shit.
June 11, 2021