Movies: The International

February 18, 2009

by Cassidy Carson

With the up-in-arms economy, a movie that targets the wickedness of banks should be a hit. But, The International fell flat this weekend as the highly suspenseful, low action drama tanked at the box office.

The International features two globetrotting individuals, Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) and Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts).

The duo is relentless in their pursuit of bringing justice to the terror-funding bank, IBBC (International Bank of Business and Credit). They uncover a slew of illegal activities and track the money and an assassin from Berlin to Milan to New York to Istanbul, all while putting their own lives at risk. Their targets’ tenacity only gets the pair in more trouble, as the bank pulls out all the stops, including murder, to continue subsidizing war.

The bank is able to buy off any nosy investigator attempting to uncover its dirty deeds.

But Salinger cannot be bought.

With an irritable demeanor and nothing to lose, Salinger stops at nothing to bring down the powerful world bank and all the red-handed criminals responsible for its fortune.

It is hinted at in the movie that Salinger somehow went rogue a few years prior to this endeavor.

It’s yet another plot the audience must try to keep up with, one that could have been part of the deleted scenes.

The movie begins slowly and develops into a highly complex plot. The plot featured so many twists that it hung on the verge of becoming overly complicated and muddled.

Not to mention, the viewer could almost begin to expect a twist, like it was second nature, and therefore contradicting the definition of a “twist.”

The International, however, did manage to hold my interest and didn’t completely insult my intelligence.

Directed by Tom Twyker (“Run, Lola, Run”), some of the scenes are reminiscent of the Bourne trilogy (but, thankfully not jerky), especially the rooftop finale in Turkey.

Twyker successfully created a world in which the policies people live with and adhere to are so corrupting it’s hard for the person to choose a side-for or against.

Viewers may have a hard time determining who the bad guys are.

The International showcased little to no action and climaxed with a well-executed showdown at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.

I squirmed in my chair, anxious to see if Clive Owen’s character was going to get his other ear shot off in a van Gogh-esque move fit for the Guggenheim.

The film should have taken its own advice as stated by the credit union’s supreme banker-turned-villain, “You must think like a man of action, and act like a man of thought.”

Perhaps it would have come to fruition had it been said with a little more vivacity and financing behind it.