It’s impossible to believe but yes, contrivances aside, Hummingbird (Redemption in the US) is a thoughtful and engaging character-driven film with a good dramatic performance by Jason Statham.

Living homeless after going on the run from a military court-martial, Joey Jones (Statham) is a damaged ex-special forces soldier trapped in London’s criminal underworld. But when opportunity enables him to assume another man’s identity, he is transformed into an avenging angel.

Hummingbird succeeds as a character driven story of two individuals nursing old wounds. They found closure with each others’ attempt to move on from past emotional traumas. Jones is haunted by his last mission in Afghanistan, while Cristina is burdened by a broken dream.

Surprisingly, Statham gives a capable dramatic performance. I had low expectations coming into this film, thinking it was just the usual beat’ em up type of role that he has pegged himself into. Instead you see a role that balances his character development with action. The fight scenes aren’t unnecessary.

Agata Buzek also delivers a great performance as the reserved and repressed nun undergoing a crisis of faith.

The film is intriguing and well paced with an occasional sense of humor. It also provides a different view on a contemporary London – prostitution rings, human smugglers, the Chinese mob – which most people would often think as a historic sprawling city of posh Brits. Statham is still that tough guy with a gentle heart, but this time around he actually flexes some acting muscles.

On the other hand, the movie fails on everything else. It’s continuously bogged down by a string of contrivances including the characters’ roles. Statham’s brooding and street-tough charisma makes it hard for the romantic angle to click.

Hummingbird is a generic film, but it has a lot of heart and a Statham finally branching outside of his self-imposed stereotypical role.

My Rating: 6.5/10

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