First Hit: It was as expected and it works – it was entertaining.
As a Secret Service protector of President Asher (Aaron Eckhart), this is what you’d expect a Gerard Butler (as Mike Manning) film to be like.
The basic story is, the US executed a drone attack on Aamir Barkawi (Alon Aboutboul) a weapons dealer who sells to terrorists. The drone attack was at his home compound during his daughter’s wedding.
Revenge is deeply bred, and two years later, Barkawi sets up a “natural cause death” of the British Prime Minister which brings all the Western Heads of State to London. Barkawi has an inside connection to British intelligence and surprises all the heads of state by killing most everyone except President Asher who escapes with Manning’s guidance and protection.
To create more tension and softness in the story, Manning’s wife is about to give birth to his first child and he realizes that his job won’t allow him to be much of a dad. Barkawi wants to kill the President on social media in front of the world, however as most Hollywood films end, it ends with the hero winning.
Butler was well cast in this role. There is a certain level of sarcastic humor and physicality that makes his role work. Eckhart is good as the President yet he’s more physical in action than one might expect. Aboutboul was strong and effective as the revengeful father and terrorist. Elsa Mollien as MI agent was wonderful. Angela Bassett as the President’s secretary was good. Morgan Freeman was effective as Vice President Trumbull. Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikt, Christian Gudegast, and Chad St. John wrote a typical and entertaining screenplay. Babak Najafi did a good job of creating an entertaining film.
Overall: It is pure entertainment and it does work.