Preview: Hitman: Agent 47

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If this week’s DVD is anything to go by, the festive cheer has officially run out: it’s Hitman: Agent 47.

Rupert Friend plays the genetically-engineered super assassin known only by the last two digits of the barcode tattooed on the back of his shiny head. He’s going up against an evil corporation who plan on creating their own army of killers to unleash on the world.

Enlisting Katia van Dees (Hannah Ware), who may hold the key to defeating his enemies, 47 goes on a series of slickly choreographed rampages with all the emotion of a toaster.

In the originality stakes one of the only things more ropey than a reboot is a movie based on a video game. Just to set the scene, with Hitman: Agent 47 we’re looking at a reboot of a movie based on a video game.

It’s not a great starting point for a movie, but then neither is having a slew of un-sympathetic characters and a trite storyline. This is director Aleksander Bach’s first movie, having made his name in commercials, and it shows.

The whole thing looks good but there’s nothing going on behind the surface, like the Bourne movies without the reflection and morality. What remains is a soulless and ultimately boring exercise.

The original Hitman movie came out in 2007 and it wasn’t very good so the decision to serve up a reboot a mere eight years later is already a strange decision. Creating a film which actually made me look more kindly upon that original is an impressive achievement.

Maybe the whole thing would have worked better as an interactive game but unfortunately that’s beyond what we’re offered here. The action is often as shiny as the titular assassin’s pate but if you’re looking for more than violence in a film you won’t find it here.