Directed by: Hadi Hajaig
Starring: Sean Bean, Charlotte Rampling, Abhin Galeya
Pretty cool jacket Mr. Bean’s got on in that movie poster there, isn’t it? I imagine that’s the jacket version of those vans with epic fantasy art painted across them. Like, maybe he got it because he was a stage hand on a James Bond movie or something, and now he just wears it around all the time because he thinks it makes him look cool. Like those guys who wear “STAFF” t-shirts anywhere other than the job they were actually staff at. Anyway, I guess this is a movie or something? Whatever THAT is.
Cleanskin is about a middle eastern guy who gets caught up in a terrorist cell in Britain and gets warped into wanting to be a suicide bomber, and only the crack police investigation of Sean Bean can stop him! Except it’s told in this weird non-linear fashion where you constantly forget about main characters and who’s supposed to be the good guy and where in time you are, and the whole thing is a big ol’ honkin’ mess.
This movie feels like it might’ve been dangerous and edgy had it been made in 2005 or so, but any real world political reverberations it may have made were so dampened that it was able to completely pass under everybody’s radar and just be another cops and robbers movie. Hell, even if they had decided who was the main character, Bean or the terrorist guy, that would’ve made the movie a lot better, but they couldn’t even commit to that. Basically it feels like the filmmakers wussed out on being dangerous or interesting and the end result is that there just isn’t really a reason to watch the film. Take some chances, people. All there is out there right now are predictable, safe movies. Those awards people love it when somebody goes off a limb and makes a film about a kid who becomes a terrorist and makes it really relatable to the audience. This is not that thing, unfortunately. I want to be able to talk about the movies I see and have conversations about them, you know what I mean? Something beyond just “welp, Sean Bean was in another movie that’s the same as always.”