Ava – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Ava – Blood of the Generic: An Assassin’s Tale

The enjoyment of cinema is undefinable.  With different styles and genres, a film can sell out a pack theater (or crowd a couch) but bring about indifferent opinions.  There will always be greatness in the idea, but it begs the question … can enjoyment be had in the basics?  In this review, I look at a Netflix Original that tries to bring uniqueness to the action brand.  Ava is an action/thriller type of experience … to a certain degree.  Even with predictable reigns supreme, Ava show that a generic action/thriller can still be fun. 

A deadly assassin, Ava (Jessica Chastain) is supreme at her craft.  When an assassination attempt doesn’t go as planned, it is a race against time to survive the fallout of the mission.  The outline is a carbon copy of every typical action/espionage thriller.  You have a standard introduction to the main character who represents the prototypical ‘efficient’ agent archetype.  As the audience follows her (in the beginning), there is little explanation to why certain things happen.  Everything is built through common assumption of generic action concepts, glazing over the hierarchy of the black ops organization through ancillary characters.  The little bit of exposition gets lost in the potential, as worldly conflicts and personal vendettas become the foundation for unfiltered action sequences and erroneous flashbacks.  As Ava works through this aftermath, this leads her back home.  Even as this adds some character depth, ultimately it gets strung in the web of the convoluted plot.  Even with the standard dialogue, melodramatic scenes and a makeshift ‘whodunit’ plotline, the subtle character conflicts add some redeeming qualities to the current mundane experience. 

When her dueling lives start to come into conflict, Ava must face the truth of her involvement with this black ops organization.  This brings in bigger players, showcasing her endearing relationships with Duke (John Malkovich) and Simon (Colin Farrell).  These characters straddle the border of typical archetypes, but their acting ability helps provide some girth to the familiar plotline.  Once everything comes to head, it brings about a confrontation that is convenient but lackluster.  The action brings life to an otherwise predictable journey, ending with a ‘revelation’ climax and heavy foreshadowed epilogue.  Ava is your ‘by-the-books’ action/thriller film.  Even with a lot of familiar tropes, the uniqueness in the main character provides a somewhat enjoyable film experience.  If you are a fan of action/thrillers, this is for you.  It is available on Netflix, but it wouldn’t be worth more than a Friday Night at home.    

Full Score – 2.5 out of 5 (Friday Night Rental)

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