This movie in some regards is just awful. And at the same time, it is extremely entertaining. It's a CIA thriller, action movie, and has a bunch of irony, and some pretty funny comedy. Generally, when a movie tries to be all things to all people it fails miserably. But somehow, not here.
Costner stars as Ethan, a 32- year CIA veteran who has spent his adult life roaming the world doing dirty CIA jobs, all the while leaving his wife Tina, (Connie Nielson) and teenage daughter Zoey (Hallie Steinfeld). He is in the middle of a huge job trying to kill a terrorist that is trying to buy a dirty bomb to use against the USA. During the job, Ethan is diagnosed with terminal cancer, and he decides to leave the CIA and find his estranged wife and daughter who are living in Paris.
He then is confronted by ViVi (Amber Heard). She is a deep CIA operative who offers Ethan a top secret, successful, experimental cancer treatment in exchange for re-entering the CIA and finishing the job he started. So he does, all the while keeping his illness and his new CIA involvement secret from his family. Can he pull it off all the while trying to re-connect with his daughter?
This movie is done fairly well with some very good writing at times, and actually some very funny scenes where Ethan tries to balance his CIA-ness and being a dad. This movie does a very nice job of not taking itself too seriously, and completely understands what kind of movie it is. This is not some testosterone fest, it is simply entertaining. It is a February release that is designed for 2 hours of escapism for us trying to get out of the cold for a while.
Costner is back in a starring role for the first time in a long time, and this is one of his best roles in a while. He also has another huge role coming up in April, when he stars in Draft Day. But the story of this movie again is the terrific, Hallie Steinfeld. Although this will not be a huge hit, this young actress is being handled so well it's borderline brilliant. She has made 4 movies, True Grit, Romeo And Juliet, Enders Game and now this. She has played opposite Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin, Harrison Ford, and now Costner, plus she did a bit of Shakespeare...well I might add. All Hollywood A-listers. Who else has started off this great?
She is simply terrific every time. I am starting to think she may be the best child actress I or any of us have ever seen. She is 100 percent authentic and believable in everything she does. Her grasp of what she is supposed to do is stunning, and the fact she is doing it with Hollywood's biggest stars opposite her is simply amazing.
This movie is not great, but it is fun, and it is great to see her continue to grow as an actress. The supporting cast here is good, and well thought out. Should be noted, there is some graphic violence here, mixed in with this fast paced script. And maybe the best thing about this movie is, it's comfortable in it's own skin.
3 Days To Kill. Not great, but fun. Well done.