Review Roundup: Critics Weigh In On MILE 22
In a visceral modern thriller from the director of Lone Survivor, Mark Wahlberg stars as James Silva, an operative of the CIA's most highly-prized and least understood unit. Aided by a top-secret tactical command team, Silva must retrieve and transport an asset who holds life-threatening information to Mile 22 for extraction before the enemy closes in.
The film stars Mark Wahlberg, Lauren Cohan, Iko Uwais, Ronda Rousey and John Malkovich. Mile 22 is directed by Peter Berg and written by Lea Carpenter.
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The film hits theaters today, so check out what the critics are saying below:
Owen Gleiberman, Variety: ""Mile 22" marks the fourth collaboration between Wahlberg and the director Peter Berg. The two have made one film together that aimed high (the gripping and convulsive true-life terrorist drama "Patriots Day"). This one aims a lot lower and, more or less, hits the mark. It's a spiky propulsive thriller, at once exciting and numbing, packed with weaponry - rocket launchers and chunky black machine guns - as well as hand-to-hand combat that's marked by a quick-time viciousness. Berg, when he wants to be, is a surgical craftsman of chaos. Yet "Mile 22" has no weight or resonance. It's a down-and-dirty hunk of product designed to kick off a franchise, and that, in the end, is what's at stake: Can it catch us up in the Greater Narrative?"
David Fear, Rolling Stone: "So when a local cop (The Raid's Iko Uwais) comes into the Malayasian embassy where Silva and his team are headquartered and presents them with an encrypted hard drive - one that will lead them to radioactive powder that's more powerful "than Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined!" - our hero wants the WHISTLEBLOWER to spill the beans. Not yet, the man says. Get him to America, then he tells them everything. There are, of course, some catches. For example, they have to personally escort him to the transport, which is [checks notes] 22 miles away. And there may be some government no-goodniks who've hired an army of motorcycle-riding thugs and mercenaries to ensure that this asset doesn't make it out of the country alive."
Tim Grierson, Screen Daily: "Unlike Berg and Wahlberg's three previous films, Mile 22 isn't based on a true story. It follows the high-strung James Silva (Wahlberg) as he leads his CIA team to track down some missing caesium that could be used for an act of international terrorism. Silva's search leads to Li Noor (Iko Uwais), a Special Forces agent for a fictional Southeast Asian nation who agrees to divulge the caesium's whereabouts once Silva spirits him out of the country."
A.A. Dowd, The A.V. Club: "In Mile 22, Wahlberg plays James "Jimmy" Silva, leader of an elite CIA paramilitary task force. Jimmy is definitely the kind of guy who believes that he could have stopped 9/11 if he had been there; one of his superiors, in fact, encourages that kind of what-if revisionism by scrawling onto a whiteboard the names of famous disasters (not just 9/11, but also Pearl Harbor, the Tet Offensive, the Paris terrorist attacks, etc.) and then implying that all could have been averted with more presumably Wahlbergian "imagination." As a dramatic actor, Wahlberg has a habit of defaulting to an aura of perpetual irritation. Jimmy Silva, who barrels into every conversation like it's a waste of his precious time, gives his shit-talking Departed lieutenant a run for his money in the testiness department. When one of his teammates, Sam Snow (Ronda Rousey), sits down to celebrate her birthday the day before a big operation, Jimmy knocks the dessert out of her hands: "No fucking birthday cake." Later, he lectures his tech team about the STAKES of a mission by reciting from memory passages from John Hersey's Hiroshima."
David Ehrlich, Indie Wire: ""Mile 22" is an artless and incoherent wannabe blockbuster that follows a CIA paramilitary caravan as they try to escort a high-level informant out of a collapsing Southeast Asian country. The film does such a poor job of explaining its plot that - at the 30-minute mark - John Malkovich has to stop the movie in its tracks and literally reiterate everything that's happened so far. At its essence, "Mile 22" is part "Sicario", part "The Raid", and all deeply terrible. Some nuclear cesium has been stolen in the fictional country of generic, off-brand Indonesia (played by the city of Bogotá), and only Li Noor (Iko Uwais) knows where it went. But he wants asylum in the United States, so it's up to paramilitary all-star John Silva (Wahlberg) and the rest of his unit to escort him the 22 miles to the airport before a local gang kills him for being a traitor."
Image courtesy of MILE 22 Official Facebook Page