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An action film directed by Steven Soderbergh

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Still a Knockout

  • Jan 19, 2012


Written by Lem Dobbs

Directed by Steven Soderbergh

Starring Gina Carano, Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbender and Channing Tatum


Aaron: Is this your idea of relaxing? Wine and gun maintenance?


To a large extent, both on the surface and at its root, Steven Soderbergh’s latest caper, HAYWIRE, is nothing more than a filmic excuse to watch former “American Gladiator”, Gina Carano, beat the living crap out of a bunch of big, strapping men. On many levels, Soderbergh has made this exact same movie in some form or another a number of times before, both stylistically and structurally. And while it may not be original at all, nor carry any real substance, HAYWIRE packs a punch that resonates with visceral intensity, leaving the viewer just as walloped as the men on screen, and loving it.


HAYWIRE is tailored to exhibit Carano’s talents to the utmost. Her mixed martial arts background lends great weight to the film, making the showcase well deserved. Whether she is taking on the likes of the mammoth Channing Tatum, or the highly skilled Michael Fassbender, or even the slightly smaller but equally spry, Ewan McGregor, Carano holds her own and then some. Her acting is occasionally stiff, but like Sasha Gray in Soderbergh’s THE GIRLFRIEND EXPERIENCE, the frosty exterior suits her character. Besides, Carano is a total pleasure to watch when she gets rough and tough. When she fights, she unleashes a pressure and force on her opponents that is almost palpable, as if you can almost feel the brunt of her knuckles against your own cheek. Of course, this is also partly attributed to the manner in which Soderbergh allows the sequences to play out as well. While they bear his unmistakable style, they also exude a certain natural rawness to them that helps anchor the film too.


Soderbergh is unquestionably one of the most accomplished filmmakers working in cinema today. He is also, most of the time, one of the most identifiable directors as well. One always knows when one sees that yellow tint on the screen that one is watching one of his films. Even the international spy story, told from several different perspectives is reminiscent of his OCEAN’S 11 series or last year’s CONTAGION. On the one hand, I was disappointed to see Soderbergh cruising through such familiar terrain in HAYWIRE, but then there is the flip side to that. While it may not break any new ground for the director, all of his staples come together perfectly here, allowing for HAYWIRE to do what it does best, which is just kick ass.

Thanks for reading.
LUNCH rating is out of 10.

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January 22, 2012
Yeah, I enjoyed this as well. It nah have a simple script but it was really good for what it was.
January 21, 2012
I really disliked this movie so much. I enjoyed reading your comments and thoughts on it. But I am still trying to find a story in it somewhere.
More Haywire (2012 film) reviews
review by . January 22, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
The Debut of The Real Female
Veteran director Steven Soderbergh may have given some people pause when they heard that he was making an action spy-thriller that seemed aimed to appease the mainstream viewer’s appetite for explosions, hard-hitting action and dumbed-down plotting. Well, it seems like the veteran filmmaker knew what he was doing when he teamed up with screen writer Lem Dobbs for their second collaboration after the hidden success of “The Limey”. “Haywire” stars MMA star Gina Carrano …
review by . May 31, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
*** out of ****    A young woman enters a diner. She is Mallory Kane (Gina Carano). She is followed soon thereafter by a man named Aaron (Channing Tatum). They talk for a little bit, although he seems upset, and just when the drinks that they ordered are about to be delivered to their table, Aaron strikes Mallory; and the two are involved in hand-to-hand combat. Mallory breaks Aaron's wrist but is wounded in her arm. A kind young man (Michael Angarano) gives Mallory the chance …
review by . January 28, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         Steven Soderbergh’s Haywire takes an interesting and seldom used approach to the spy action thriller: It strips away all visual and thematic pretensions and simply plunges headfirst into pure adrenaline-pumping espionage. I’m hard pressed to say that the story is simple, and yet it’s clear to me that everything unnecessary has been left out, leaving only that which must be there for the sake of advancement. Although the fight sequences …
review by . January 17, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
'Haywire' 'Two Jews On Film' Begin The Year Disagreeing Over Soderbergh's Spy Thriller (Video)
      I knew I was going to love 'Haywire' directed by Steven Soderbergh from the first scene.       A girl walks into a coffee shop in the middle of nowhere.   She sits down...blows on her hands to warm them.  The waitress takes her order.       A few seconds later, a man comes in, sits down opposite her.  They briefly chat...and then SUDDENLY...      It's wham...bam...pow-kick-punch....Trans …
review by . January 21, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
Steven Sogerbergh has been talking about retiring from the film industry for some time now, that being said this is his 25th film in a little over 20 years. He has never done a movie involving so much fighting as he is usually known for his dark shots and dialogue heavy stories. He is still able to put his own spin on the genre and makes Haywire an enjoyable movie even if it leaves no long lasting impression.      Newcomer Gina Carano stars as a black ops agent seeking …
About the reviewer
Joseph Belanger ()
Ranked #24
Hello Lunchers. I am a thirty-something guy making his way in Toronto. I am a banker by day and a film critic the rest of the time. Sensitive, sharp and sarcastic are just a few words that start with … more
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About this movie


  • Gina Carano as Mallory Kane in ``Haywire.''
  • Opened January 20, 2012 | Runtime:1 hr. 32 min.
  • R
    some violence
  • Information for parents: Common Sense Media says Iffy for 15+.
  • Mallory Kane (Gina Carano) is a highly trained operative for a government security contractor. Her missions take her to the world's most dangerous areas. After Mallory successfully frees a hostage journalist, she's betrayed and left for dead by someone in her own agency. Knowing her survival depends on learning the truth behind the double-cross, Mallory uses her black-ops training to set a trap. But when things go awry, Mallory knows she'll die unless she can turn the tables on her adversary.


  • Cast: Gina Carano, Michael Douglas, Michael Fassbender, Ewan McGregor, Bill Paxton, Channing Tatum, Michael Angarano, Antonio Banderas, Mathieu Kassovitz
  • Director: Steven Soderbergh
  • Genres: Action/Adventure
  • view wiki


    Genre: Action, Adventure, Thriller
    Release Date: Jan. 20, 2012

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