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Living in a world of ones and zeroes where everything is connected, saved and stored, the inevitable outcome is that at some point valuable information will be compromised. The thieves of this decade can do more damage with a keyboard and an internet connection than a violent extremist can do with a backpack full of C4 explosives. That is is a frightening realization, especially when you consider that someone can wreak havoc from halfway around the world without even leaving their sofa. The crime-drama Blackhat attempts to bring this life out of the shadows, while making it relatable to the average theater patron.

Blackhat stars Chris Hemsworth as Nicholas Hathaway, a cyber criminal himself, who is currently serving time in prison. Due to several high level computer related crimes, Hathaway has an opportunity to be released from prison to help both the Americans and Chinese in apprehending a cyber terrorist. Chen Dawai (Leehom Wang) is the officer tasked by the Chinese delegation to lead the investigation. He is also the one who negotiates Hathaway’s release to assist in the investigation. Wang also brings in his sister, Lien Chen (Wei Tang) to support Hathaway, as she also has a computer background. Assisting in the field are two American agents played by Viola Davis and Holt McCallany.

The problem with Blackhat is that it too easily takes the road often traveled, whereas predictability is quite high throughout. In addition to that, all of the expected cliches are present. There’s no need to go into detail because it will be fairly evident if the decision is made to invest two hours and fifteen minutes into watching this.

The technical details, from a computer standpoint, will likely go over many people’s heads. Unfortunately, those that truly “get it” will also take issue, because some of the things aren’t feasible, much less believable. The visual representation of hacking gets old pretty quick.

While Blackhat has some redeeming factors, the pace in conjunction with the runtime leaves much to be desired. Director Michael Mann usually has a better feel with how his movies should flow, but lately that doesn’t seem to be the case (Public Enemies being recent example of that). If looking at Chris Hemsworth is one of the top reasons to see this, then by all means enjoy yourself, otherwise just wait to see it at home or at a matinee as it is not worth the price of a full admission ticket.

Blackhat is streaming now on the following services:
Movie Reelist Contributor: Carl Wheeler


  1. Thankfully, It was Free popcorn night at the Emagine. or I would of fell asleep at a couple of no dialogue parts in the movie.

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