Liam Neeson may have the “angry older man kicking ass” segment in Hollywood down to a pat, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be a contender now and again to try and add to the roster. John Travolta tried with ‘From Paris with Love’ (2010) and now Kevin Costner who’s heralding a sort of comeback, gives a shot at the kind of high octane action movies usually set in Europe, that Luc Besson usually directs or produces (he’s producing this one).
Ethan Renner (Kevin Costner) is a highly proficient CIA “cleaner”, which means he globe trots, taking out bad guys almost singlehandedly. However on his latest mission he falters at the last leg only to soon realise, he’s afflicted by cancer. Given only a few months to live, he quits the agency and heads to Paris to reconnect with his estranged wife and teenage daughter. Despite promises to his wife that he’s no longer partaking in his former clandestine line of work, Ethan is approached by a CIA operative with a tantalizing proposition. In return for three days of work, trying to eliminate the target Ethan let slip during the opening mission, he will be given a new experimental drug that can maybe cure his cancer and give him a new lease of life. Ethan reluctantly agrees and then sets about shooting up Paris, while trying to bond with his daughter.
The movie’s clearly intended as an action-comedy but doesn’t manage to balance out the two genres with satisfaction. There are some high octane action sequences but nothing we haven’t seen before in countless movies and the jokes though not entirely flat, aren’t funny enough to constantly keep you laughing. Even the whole father-daughter reconciliation track is trite and lifeless despite there being an attempt at being sincere. So while certain scenes work, as a whole, the movie warrants little attention and provides even lesser entertainment.
‘3 Days to Kill’ is at best worthy of a watch when it arrives on television and for fans of Amber Heard who probably is easily the best thing about this dull, prodding movie.