Pone can assume that the rather indescribable title of this film is intended to increase the mystery surrounding its heroine. Mary Elizabeth Winstead plays Kate, a dark assassin who crosses Tokyo on a mission of revenge after learning her days are numbered. In the end, however, you’ll wish Winstead had received a bit more history to work with. Kate’s blood-splattered spell ends up being compelling, but it takes time to worry about what she’s doing.
The film begins with Kate killing her Mark, a key member of a Japanese gangster clan, but only after a major moral dilemma. Because the target’s teenage daughter was present when she killed him, Kate had to break her only rule as an assassin – no children within sight of the murder. Kate is so consumed with guilt that she tells Boss Varrick (Woody Harrelson), a surrogate father figure who trained her to kill from a young age, that she is considering quitting their racketeering. He seems puzzled that Kate wants to trade her life of excitement with guns for a white picket fence in the suburbs, but doesn’t try to dissuade her. In addition, Kate reassures him that she will not resign until she finishes her last job.
However, Kate’s dreams of a calmer future are thwarted when she finds out she has been poisoned during an overnight adventure organized by the gangster clan. With a radioactive chemical element passing through her body and only 24 hours to live, she decides to prioritize shutting down. Defying Varrick’s advice, she sets out to hunt down chieftain Kijima (Jun Kunimura) in order to find out why he poisoned her, a mere mercenary, as a reward for her brother’s death. Her bargaining chip is her teenage niece Ani (Miku Martineau) – the same innocent girl who saw her father get killed – who Kate kidnaps during a rock concert featuring a cameo from the queens of Japanese metal Band-Maid .
As Kate keeps her cool and continues to kill, it’s not hard to spot the influence of similar but superior revenge thrillers. John wick and Atomic blonde. After all, their director David Leitch is credited as a producer here. However, the director of this film Cédric Nicolas-Troyan (The Hunter: The Winter War) manages to inject Kate with a minimum of her own flair, aided by Tokyo‘s neon backdrop and Winstead’s engaged performance. Ferociously shaped as a woman whose mental toughness outweighs her ruined body, she really sells Katesuccession of bloody and brutal combat scenes. One final plot twist is less compelling, but at this point the movie packs enough oomph – just – to keep you going until the end.
- Director: Cedric Nicolas Troyan
- With : Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Woody Harrelson, Miku Martineau
- Release date: September 10