Los Angeles, CA — In the all-new action movie, “Bullet Train,'' expect to be rocked completely out of your seat as Brad Pitt, also known as Ladybug, is hired as an assassin to fill in for a colleague to execute a mission on a high-speed train. The task? Find the silver briefcase full of ransom money. The catch? Ladybug is supposed to be out of the killing game.
The job is easier said than done though — there are several other hired killers after the case, too, including Tangerine (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Lemon (Brian Tyree Henry; you may also know him from Donald Glover’s hit TV show “Atlanta”) who have British accents and go by the name of “the twins.” Also, Prince (Joey King), a young woman in a hot pink school uniform, who is impressively charming, but not as innocent as she seems. A few others, who make this nonstop action worth buckling up for.
You’ll start to feel your heart race as each killer gets closer and closer to scoring the briefcase– which makes them also closer to one another. Just as Pitt finds the hidden case, he runs into Tangerine and Lemon — who apparently had the briefcase in their possession first, and will be killed if they lose it. You’re in for some laughs as this will be a constant struggle for these three characters for the remainder of the film. Expect the young woman to make matters worse. She has a very clever way of snagging the case, and finds the perfect person to help her execute the mission.
Apart from its unlikely group of characters, the timing in this movie is really on point. In each fighting scene, you’ll be jolted, kicked and body slammed right out of your seat as the killers wrestle to be the first one to score the case. You can also expect to see swords, knives and good ol ‘punches to the face, as Pitt abruptly fights off the other characters. The film is also an adaptation of Kōtarō Isaka’s 2010 novel, “Bullet Train,” and is set in Kyoto, Japan. Its neon lights and animated backgrounds really compliment the fast-paced plot. It creates a futuristic design, and a Tokyo feel. By the end, you’ll empathize with the journey and Pitts' exhaustion, but maybe not with the “white man saves the day” vibes.
The representation and symbolism of Pitts' character is not the best. Over and over again, American films depict white men as “heroes,” the ones to save the day, and having the privilege to walk away clean from fights. This detail is not obvious, but you’ll definitely notice if you’re interested in culture and how narrative is shaped for generations to come.
But hey, if you haven’t been out to the theaters since the beginning of the pandemic — this one’s worth putting on your mask for! It's totally fresh, wildly funny and will be great to watch with a couple friends, and a bag of buttery popcorn.