Extraction (2020) is an American action-thriller, based on the graphic novel Ciudad by Ande Parks, Joe Russo and Anthony Russo. Written by Joe Russo, this film is a feature debut for director Sam Hargrave and stars Chris Hemsworth and Rudhraksh Jaiswal. The story follows mercenary Tyler Rake (Hemsworth) as he is hired by an Indian drug lord to rescue his son Ovi (Jaiswal), who was kidnapped after sneaking off to a club.
The one aspect of Extraction that stands out is the cinematography and choreography done to enhance the fighting sequences. Whilst Hemsworth is a great actor to pick for the demanding fight choreography that is given, the filming of these sequences enhance every moment of the fight. If this film is going for an action aspect, it certainly works within these particular scenes. There is one scene in particular halfway throughout the film that uses one-take to capture the entire fight, and it does not drag or feel forced either. It shows off the technicality and tight precision that had to be done to pull it off and it works extremely well.
It is very clear what tone this film wanted to take and fully commits to it, not letting itself losing focus of the goal and motive. Whilst it could have been easy to try and lighten the film up with some comedy or a fully-fledged romance, that is not the objective of this story. It is a harsh, gritty film about the real struggles within the world of drug-dealing and kidnapping in India and I think the script highlights the harsh reality incredibly well, even if it does go a little overboard in the narrative at times.
As I mentioned before, Chris Hemsworth is a great choice to star in this role. Whilst it may be the connection to the Russo Brothers that got him the role and a big name like his helps promote the film for others to check out on Netflix, he also just does a great job playing this sort of role. He is an actor that has done similar films to this, such as 12 Strong, but fully commits to the story and is not afraid to tell these darker messages and put all his effort into it.
Whilst there is plenty in the film to enjoy, it unfortunately was unable to grip me as a story and therefore keep me engaged. Whilst the concept is one that could be engaging, there were numerous subplots that just did not connect with me. With each section of the film, it started to drag with more drama that either lacked any emotion or connection, making it hard to sympathise with the characters and the situation, or slowly become more unbelievable by the minute.
This film is just under two hours long, and aside from the action sequences, it dragged quite slowly for the subject matter. With little character or story development, it left me feeling cold throughout and wondering why I should be giving the story my full attention. Even for the awesome action sequences, there were so few of them and slowly started to become repetitive. The final battle felt underwhelming in comparison to other sequences throughout, also leading to issues of pacing throughout the entire runtime. A good 15-20 minutes could have easily been cut out, making the pacing run smoother and perhaps keeping my attention for longer.
Whilst I will not comment about any particular aspect of the ending, I will just say that I did not like it at all and think that it did not work for this particular film. Whilst the rest of the film kept a realistic tone and setting for the film, this ending took a slightly different tone to that which felt off in comparison to the gritty and harsh reality of the world that was set up. It sadly left the film for me on a sour note, as it wanted me to care about these characters when I had already lost interest in them.
Whilst this isn’t the worst film that Netflix has come out with in the past few months, I still cannot say that this film is exactly good either. Whilst the film has its moments of excellence riddled throughout it, the story simply isn’t captivating enough to fully hold itself for the two-hour runtime. Unless you want to see some great action sequences (and even then, John Wick: Chapter Three – Parabellum is also available to enjoy on Netflix) I would say to skip this one.
Have you checked out Extraction yet? Did it keep you engaged for the story, or simply for the action? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section and let’s have a discussion.