I decided to end my first Fistmas with a movie connected to first movie I watched during my new tradition. I chose Hardcore Henry because it not only shared a director with Nobody but also because I hadn’t seen it in four or five years. It had been long enough for me to vaguely remember bits of the story but still be drawn into the story. I feel like its an underseen action movie mostly because of how it was shot. People feeling like it was nothing more than a gimmick, which it is so much more than that.
Ilya Naishuller made a video game movie that wasn’t based on a video game. The story feels exactly like a video game in the way that it unfolds. I say that in the best way because it would be the kind of game that I would want to play or at the very least watch someone else play. It being shot in the first-person point of view is one of the things that makes the movie feel like a video game. The titular character was played several people including Sergey Valyaev, Andrei Dementiev, and Naishuller himself. So many people played Henry because of the difficulty of filming the movie the way it was filmed. It being so fluid in execution is a testament to everyone that made the movie.
Sharlto Copley got to play so many different parts in Hardcore Henry and it seemed like it was a lot of fun. He adds to the video game feel of the movie since he plays so many different versions of the same character and feels like the person that would guide you through the tutorial of a video game. Danila Kozlovsky and Haley Bennett are the other main cast members. The three help move the plot forward and make it as enthralling as it is. Kozlovsky is such a fantastic villain in the movie.
The effects in Hardcore Henry look pretty good. There are some that don’t look mind-blowing, but they don’t take you out of the movie. It might even add to the video game quality of the movie. The set design is fun and help the different locations feel distinct. The music from Dasha Charusha is fantastic. The score is one of the few elements that don’t add to the video game feel because it feels more like an action movie score.
Hardcore Henry is an action movie that’s fun as hell and is more than what people would think of as its gimmick. That fact that this movie ended up being considered a box-office bomb is a shame because this world feels like it could be used to tell more stories. Hardcore Henry being on Netflix gives me hope that it will continue to find an audience. If that happens, maybe a sequel or something similar could be made. I give Hardcore Henry 8.5 baseball bats out of 10.