Nobody

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Everything moves so fast at the outset. In a little over a minute, two weeks of Hutch’s (Bob Odenkirk) life are condensed with thudding rapidity. The problem with Nobody is that our eponymous nebbish was once a notorious somebody, a retired mob “auditor,” a high-paid contract killer who traded in his violent ways for a quiet suburban life with his family. (Hutch is at his best when breaking his enemies down with exposition.) When his home is ransacked by a pair of punks, one of whom draws a bead on his son, Hutch appears to go full wimp, allowing the boy to take a punch knowing full well that his assailant’s revolver had an empty chamber. As written, it’s hard to swallow Hutch as either a good family man or multi-layered mafioso when a character such as him bleeds stereotypes. In spirit, the film’s high point — a dragged-out knock-down-drag-out that takes place aboard a bus — owes much to John Carpenter’s amusingly unremitting bare-knuckle brawl in They Live. And if the old adage about “the meaner the villain, the better the film” is true, Russian gangster Yubian’s (Aleksey Serebryakov) one-take entrance, that follows him from back seat to dance floor, heralded a sexy beast. We are instead served another helping of reheated sociopath: connected, funded, and otherwise unexceptional. Ilya Naishuller directs. (2021) — Scott Marks

Rated R | 1 hour, 32 minutes
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