Niagara Gazette — The film falters a bit because the thugs who stab Parker in the back are too over-the-top in terms of their brutal behavior. As with many contemporary action movies, the gunplay in “Parker” is excessive, which detracts from the main character’s persona. Yes, he can be lethal, but he also has an intelligence that is fun to experience. We need more brainwork and less blood.
Director Taylor Hackford (“An Officer And A Gentleman,” “Ray”) is not an action filmmaker, but he manages to keep the pacing strong. Where he and screenwriter John J. McLaughlin slip up is by relying too much on the brutality. Parker may be a rough and tumble antihero, but even an antihero feels pain. Or should. The character bounces back too quickly and too often from attacks that would cripple almost anyone.
Hackford and McLaughlin have turned fiction into fantasy. This doesn’t ruin the movie, but it makes it less solidly entertaining. The good news is that Statham gives it his all and succeeds.Michael Calleri reviews films for Night and Day. Contact him at email@example.com.