American Ultra

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American Ultra

Many reviews have praised elements of the film, but feel it lacks suitable direction.

By David Light

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Published: Thu 10 Sep 2015, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Thu 10 Sep 2015, 9:21 AM

When outspoken film writer Max Landis attended Dubai's last Comic Con he was surprisingly tight-lipped about his latest project, American Ultra. That was until he found a group of dedicated fans and, while constantly look over each shoulder, let them in on an unedited sneak peek of the movie's trailer on his laptop - swearing them to secrecy at the time.
The gregarious movie mogul's enthusiasm for storytelling is palpable. Not only was he the standout guest at Comic Con, his work rate is astounding. Aged only 30, Landis has five major films to his name including debut Chronicle, which made ten times its budget and garnered rave reviews.
Commentary on his latest offering, American Ultra, however, has been mixed. Opening at number six in America, the film promises an original take on the spy action/thriller/comedy. A mix between the Jason Bourne series and Pineapple Express, Jesse Eisenberg plays "herbally enhanced" convenience store clerk Mike whose secret CIA assassin powers are activated when a couple of bad guys show up on the scene. After dispatching said baddies, the only person he can turn to is girlfriend Phoebe (Kristen Stewart). So begins a chase movie as a rival government agency attempts to eliminate Mike who, unbeknown to him, is the sole remaining agent from the failed Ultra programme.
Many reviews have praised elements of the film, but feel it lacks suitable direction. Audiences just haven't been interested. Landis has taken to social media to defend his movie stating originality is now being persecuted - citing success is rare unless the movie happens to be part of a comic book franchise. I wholeheartedly agree, but I'd probably still go see Ricki and The Flash to prove a point rather than American Ultra.
IMDb gives this 6.5 and Rotten Tomatoes has it at 47%

In an interview Stephen King said he loved the movie.

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