“Extraction” stars Chris Hemsworth, Rudhraksh Jaiswal, Randeep Hooda, Pankaj Tripathi, Priyanshu Painyuli, Golshifteh Farahani, Suraj Rikame, and David Harbour. Released on Netflix on April 24, 2020, the film is about a mercenary who is sent to rescue the son of an international crime lord.
The film features the directorial debut of Sam Hargrave, who served as a stunt coordinator for “Captain America: Civil War” and “Avengers: Endgame”. It is based on the comic Ciudad by Ande Parks, Joe Russo, and Fernando León González. We experienced a kooky animated tale about the importance of family. Now it’s time for us to travel to the murky underworld filled with weapons dealers and drug lords. This next Netflix film I’ll be reviewing today is the latest collaboration between Chris Hemsworth and the Russo Brothers, who previously worked together on the last two Avengers films, “Infinity War” and “Endgame”. Now this isn’t the first time that the Russos have worked on a non-Marvel film with an actor from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Last year, they teamed up with “Black Panther” star Chadwick Boseman to deliver the police thriller “21 Bridges”, which I thought was a fine little time-waster. That film was successful enough for the Russos to produce another action thriller. This time, with Thor. I’m getting the feeling that these two love working with these actors, whether they’re in the MCU or not. The streaming service has made up for their first two April films with “The Willoughbys”, so let’s see if this one can finish off the month on a high note.
The story follows Tyler Rake (Hemsworth), a former SASR operator turned mercenary who is hired to travel to Dhaka and rescue the Indian drug lord’s son, Ovi Mahajan (Jaiswal), from the city’s biggest drug lord, Amir Asif (Painyuli). This mission turned out to be much more dangerous than Tyler thought when Amir orders a lockdown in the city. Now on his own, Rake will have to rely on his skills in order to protect the boy from Amir’s goons as well as the boy’s father’s henchman Saju (Hooda) and escape the city alive. Let’s start things off by saying that the film’s plot is just as straightforward as it can get. Ranging from its basic characters to its generic and stereotypical villain, the story took the back seat and allowed the action to drive their way to their destination. There were also moments when some of the dialogue is hard for me to hear, so if you have a television with no home theater sound system, this might become problematic to you as well. To its credit, the filmmakers put some respectable effort into making me care for Tyler and the situation he’s in, but that’s about it. Despite its story problems, the film set out to be an entertaining and heart-pounding experience from start to finish, and it accomplished that task with ease. It’s obviously no “John Wick”, but I had a decent time watching Thor beat the snot out of the drug lord’s henchmen. Chris Hemsworth did a really good job with his performance as Tyler Rake, aka the only person that’s worth caring about in the film. Whether it’s the dialogue scenes or the stunts he performed, Hemsworth made every minute of his screen time count. The other actors were also solid in their roles, including Jaiswal and Hooda as Ovi and Saju respectively. Now that I got those things out of the way, let’s talk about the biggest selling point of the film: the action. First-time director Sam Hargrave has cooperated with the Russo Brothers in their MCU films as a stunt coordinator, so seeing him direct the entire film meant that he got more stuff to work with along with organizing the stunts. It reminded me of the time when Chad Stahelski went from stunt coordinator to director in order to bring the world of “John Wick” to life. While Hargrave’s direction on the dramatic scenes was far from amazing, his direction on the action scenes was definitely pleasing to the eyes of an action genre fan like myself. The action sequences were fast, intense, and well-choreographed, especially the one that was made to look like it was shot in one take. That alone is the main reason why this film is worth a watch. Plus, the cinematography and the editing made the sequences easier for me to see what was happening. From what I read, the film has been getting some critical comments about its violence, which is understandable because the film likes to favor bloody kills and explosions over storytelling from time to time. I didn’t mind the violence because of the environment it took place in and how enjoyable it was, but I can see that it’s not for everyone. Another thing I would like to point out is the runtime. The film is close to two hours long, which is fine for something like this, but for people who don't like R-rated violence, it can overstay its welcome just a tiny bit.
Overall, “Extraction” doesn’t have the perfect story to go along with its impressive stunt work, but it’s still an action-packed thrill ride that will surely please action fans and Hemsworth lovers alike. Aside from its simplistic characters and a weak antagonist, the film relied on Hemsworth’s performance, Hargrave’s direction, and the action sequences to make this another worthy recommendation for those who are still stuck inside their homes. I had a really nice time watching this film, and unless you prefer action films that offer both storytelling and violence, you might have a good time watching this as well.