In order to stop a large-scale plot by cyberterrorists, a convicted hacker works together with the Chinese government to find the person responsible.
Sporadically Hollywood tries to approach the subject of hacking, probably due to its high relevance in current affairs and a certain coolness attached to it – we already know hackers are not just lonely pale guys perpetually stuck in front of a screen.
Blackhat uses no other than sexiest man alive Chris Hemsworth to rid viewers of this particular stereotype, while director Michael Mann tries to combine accuracy with his penchant for action.
It is in this that Blackhat fails, as the script by newcomer Morgan David Foehl knots itself up in too many details, and even the visualisations of hacking are nothing you have not seen before.
The cinematography is bare-bones meant not to waste a shot and thus seemingly the opposite of the script that could have done with a lot fewer anti-climactic discussion in office rooms. More than often the changing of locales in the film and generously coloured night-time scenes feel as if they are meant to visually shake awake the slightly drooping audience.
The action sequences are solid, they soon become oddly detached from the actual subject of the film, which will be confusing to the casually interested viewer and make no sense to the knowledgeable.
The final product is too slow for an action film, and too frustratingly illogical for a cyber-thriller.
In Mann’s defence, it is a combination of genres that many have tried their hands on and failed equally, and it will be up to the individual viewer whether the action sequences make up for Blackhat‘s failings and grim characters.
Inconsistently paced and lacking in logic, Blackhat is a film you will either like for its stylish action or at most feel indifferent about.
Director: Michael Mann
Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Wang Leehom, Wei Tang, Viola Davis
Running Time: 132 minutes
Release Date: 20th February 2015