Saturday, 15 August 2009

Shooter


Mark Wahlberg is a former Marine sharp shooter brought in by the Secret Service to prevent a Presidential assassination. However, he finds himself framed for the hit he was hired to stop, and goes on the run to seek revenge on those behind the conspiracy.

Wahlberg tracks down the assassin, only to end up trapped, with an elite team of troops ready to take him out. Wahlberg retreats to a nearby ridge under heavy fire from the soldiers and a helicopter that is providing air cover.

Hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned, things look grim for Wahlberg until he spots a fuel tank placed directly below the low flying helicopter. One well placed shot later and the helicopter is out of commission. Permanently.

Verdict

A rather uninspired helicopter explosion. As soon as the fuel tank appears in Wahlberg's rifle sights you know how he's going to deal with the chopper.

That said, the explosion is nicely handled. The copter doesn't explode immediately, flying on, out of control, and consumed by flame, for several more seconds, before eventually crashing behind some trees. However, the first rule of exploding helicopters is you see them explode. Obscuring their detonation is anathema to the art of exploding helicopters.

Number of exploding helicopters

1

Relevance to plot

Solid. There's every reason to believe that the soldiers would have air support.

Artistic merit

Some. The flying, fireball of helicopter is cool, however, failing to fully show it explode is a grave crime, and should be illegal in Hollywood. It is not known whether director Antoine Fuqua ever received censure from the Directors Guild for this grave error.

Exploding helicopter innovation

Nice piece of improvisation from Wahlberg to blow it up with the fuel tank.

Positives

We're teased briefly as the helicopter resists its ultimate destruction.

Negatives

Those damn trees.



Review by: Jafo