CIA operative James Silva is totally smart. Way smarter than anyone else so when the US government needs someone to escort a highly valuable source out of an unstable country in order to locate some radioactive material they know who to call. Can Silva and his team find the material before it’s too late? Find out in… Mile 22.
How?! James Silva leads a team of total assholes/badasses. They don’t have time for character development, they’re a little busy saving the world. You OK with that? No? Then fuck you. His team leads a raid on a secret Russian spy bunker where they kill a whole bunch of people including a young guy who’s ominously like “you’ll regret this,” and Silva is like “I regret nothing… ever… because I have no emotions.” Anyway in the process they lose critical information on locating a dangerous radioactive material. Months later they are still trying to find that material and one of the team’s sources seems to totally bone them with a false lead. This dude shows up and claims that everything he has said is correct and if they get him out of the country he’ll give them the location of the rest of the material. He shows them proof that he knows where the material is and then proves that he’s pretty important by showing off some ninja moves against a couple of assassins. They decide to move him and need to get him 22 miles to the nearest airbase. You know what happens next. That’s right, they are compromised and their caravan is attacked. They then head to a safe house that is also compromised and they are attacked. They head into an apartment building which is compromised and they are attacked and the source demonstrates his loyalty by helping them escape. Finally they blow up everyone and crush their enemies only to find out that the source is a triple agent! Oh no, what a twist! He is actually working for Russia who wanted to nail Silva’s team for the death of that young guy that Silva killed who was also the son of a general. We end on a cliffhanger where Silva is all alone and he’s like “I’ll 100% kill you, triple agent, in the sequel. No need to resolve anything here.” THE END.
Why?! For a film predicated on the idea that you don’t know who to trust or what is real in this cat and mouse game of CIA trickery it sure does airmail a couple of things. We get an extended opening where Silva is shown killing a young man who utters the ominous prediction that he will regret his actions. Are we then supposed to forget this happened for the rest of the film? Because (surprise, surprise) this turns out to be the ENTIRE MOTIVATION for the enemy in the film. Yeah, duh. You may be wondering what Silva’s motivation is in the film. Simple: he has no motivation because he is a crazy obsessive who just screams and swears at everyone all the time.
Who?! God imagine if this film had a Planchet. Just some super helpful chubby dude that Silva spends the movie yelling at and calling an idiot. What I wouldn’t give. But obviously the main thing is that this is the second Ronda Rousey film we’ve done for BMT after Expendables 3. Soon to be three when we watch the Entourage film.
What?! As noted in a number of reviews for this film it has one of the weirdest product placements I can remember. One of the members of the team is a divorced mom and is shown using a shared custody app called OurFamilyWizard. I had assumed it was fake since they even made up the country they were in but nope. Real thing. Don’t ask me why this was featured so prominently. And I can’t imagine they paid for it since the character spends the whole movie talking about how much she hates it.
Where?! Opens in the United States and ends with some brief scenes in Colombia, but spends a vast majority of the film in the fictional country of Indocarr. I loved how specific they were with this fictional country that I think we’ll eventually do a cycle where we travel from fictional country to fictional country. Not sure there are enough of them, but we can find out. Incomplete.
When?! We can see on the surveillance cameras that Silva’s team uses that it’s 9/6/2018. There was some question of whether month or day comes first, but considering this is equipment used by a US black ops force I would guess that it’s indeed September. Nice exact date, although not super obvious or anything. B.
I actually somewhat enjoyed Mile 22. I guess I can understand why people were made uncomfortable by the semi right wing undertones of the film (similar to how the television show 24 just wouldn’t work the same way today as it did in the early 2000’s). But this is no Death Wish who’s foundation is built on the positives of vigilante justice and veiled racism. It’s fantasy spy shit with characters who have a license to kill. I liked the action, I liked how shockingly short it was, and I liked the balls to 100% without a doubt set up a sequel. There is literally no resolution to the story. They dared audiences not to gobble this up and ask for more (and they did not). They really misjudged the appetite in today’s world for this kind of stuff. Anyway, I think the film is a fine suspense action film despite an intensely unlikeable main character and a final “twist” airmailed from miles away. Though, I can understand the difficulty for the reviewers who have to review films that have morals they do not agree with. Much like every show on CBS this proposes a world where national security justifies any amount of violence and criminal actions. If you don’t agree with that are you supposed to ignore it… seems impossible. Patrick?
‘Ello everyone! Mark Wahlberg is a totally badass foul-mouthed off-the-radar agent who is super good at (1) his job and (2) being totally duped by Russia … wait a second! Let’s get into it!
P’s View on the Preview – Naturally I couldn’t get that RogerEbert.com review out of my head. Is is just jingoistic nonsense? It is downright gun-loving super violence? Is it just the film we’ll point to where Peter Berg started to direct straight-to-VOD Seagal films? It did take this from “ho hum, another Mark Wahlberg film” territory, to “wait a goddamn second am I about to watch alt-right propaganda?” which was I guess … interesting.
The Good – Almost nothing. If martial arts and gratuitous violence is your thing then go for it, this movie was made for you. But, it is not my thing and I hated basically every moment of this film. So let’s just skip to the next section.
The Bad – Almost everything! So am I supposed to think Mark Wahlberg is good at his job? Because if he isn’t I’m not sure why everyone puts up with his garbage ‘tude to be honest. He’s a stone cold asshole. And I think I’m supposed to think he’s good at his job … but then he is totally duped by Comrade Martial Arts? It all felt like a “whoops, our movie feels like a shitty Seagal film, well what about we make a little twist?”, but is kind of fails because the twist completely sacrifices the invincibility of the Wahlberg character, which is the only trait that would make him remotely tolerable! I’m going to say it: dog poo in my face. Probably specifically for me, but I found the film intolerable from start to finish.
You Just Got Schooled – Looking over the list of fictional countries (as Jamie points out this film takes place in Indocarr, a fictional country not yet on this list) it is interesting that we have seemingly not watched a single BMT film set in a fictional country. Now, this is unlikely, but possible. Interestingly for Expendables (not BMT, only Expendables 3 is BMT qualifying) we did visit the island nation of Vilena (also weirdly not on the list). But hey wait a minute … Expendables 3 has some sort of involvement with the government of Azmenistan … which isn’t as place. This list is hoooooorseshiiiiiit.
The BMT – Berg and Wahlberg films I think are now on the radar for future projects, just like Wahlberg comedies are all pretty terrible these days. It adds nicely to the repertoire of gun-loving action films as well, which is always an interesting sub-genre/culture to explore for me.
Welcome to Earf – Ronda Rousey is in Mile 22 and Expendables 3 with Sylvester Stallone, who was in Zookeeper with Adam Sandler, who was in Jack and Jill with Al Pacino, who was in 88 Minutes with Leelee Sobieski, who was in Here on Earth. Welcome to Earf!
StreetCreditReport.com – Genuinely I am shocked that I can’t find 22 Miles on any worst of lists. I think in retrospect it might get some play because of the big names, although now looking at Jamie’s review perhaps people just tolerated it more than me? It also has an almost zero percent chance at a Razzie since it isn’t even on the shortlist (and write-ins never work). I would smash Wahlberg for Worst Actor and Berg for Worst Director if I was still a voting member, but I am not.