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Beckett (2021) (Movie Review)

REVIEW OVERVIEW

The Film

SUMMARY

An John David Washington is an American tourist in Greece who finds himself embroiled in a dangerous political conspiracy after he is involved in a tragic car accident in this middling action-thriller from Netflix.

Beckett (2021) has to do with two tourists, Becket (John David Washington) and April (Alicia Vikander) that stay in Greece for their vacation. Everything seems to be going well, with the couple visiting historic sites and spending quality time together, when a car accident turns everything upside down.

April dies and Beckett is left devastated, trying to talk to his wife’s parents and communicate fruitfully with the Greek residents and the police. The situation gets worse as a chief policeman and a woman working with him try to kill him. Beckett is unable to understand what is going on and tries to gain some time by hiding in a man’s house and later he flees asking a couple of beekeepers to lend him their phone to call the American embassy in Athens seeking protection. He takes the train from Kalampaka but he is found by the policeman who shoots at him and Beckett flees. Then Beckett meets two female activists heading to Athens where a left-wing politician whose son was abducted is going to give a speech. Photos of the boy are everywhere around the streets and Beckett claims he has seen the boy in the house when he was traumatized by the car accident.

The women decide to drive him to Athens. It seems that the guy was kidnapped by a group of extremist Greek nationalists for political reasons and Beckett was at the wrong place at the wrong time. Still, there is more going on than this initial assumption.

Concerning the performances, I was disappointed by the acting skills of the cast, as the acting felt rushed and unconvincing. Also, Alicia Vikander was superficial in her role as April, but for the strong chemistry with the protagonist Beckett played by John David Washington. The only performance with which I am satisfied is the one by Washington, as he was very good at portraying to the viewer the feelings of grief, guilt and fear he experiences throughout the movie.

In terms of direction it is well made, as Ferdinando Cito Filomarino creates a lot of tension, making the film unnerving and full of suspense from the beginning. Also sound direction was exceptional, contributing to the chaos of an American tourist being chased by the police in a city like Athens, during a protest with lots of tear gas and the disorienting violence. This scene is very intense and I haven’t felt like this since I saw the shocking scenes of Aronofsky’s Mother! (2017).

Cinematography includes a combination of rural and urban elements. The first half of the film is shot in locations like the archaeological site of Delphi, at a village named Dilofu and Ioannina city. Later we see the train station of Trikala and Athens. In Athens, Beckett is chased around the city center at Syntagma Square, at the area close to Omonoia train station and at Exarchia neighborhood.

As a conclusion, Beckett could be much better, and definitely the main reason for that is the weak plot. There were many ideas and I see a lot of potential, but everything was weakly applied and this makes the film look very disordered and confusing.

Beckett is streaming now on Netflix


  • Rating Certificate: TV-MA
  • Studios & Distributors: Frenesy Film Company | MeMo Films | RT Features | Rai Cinema | Netflix
  • Country: Italy | Brazil
  • Language: English | Greek
  • Run Time: 110 Mins.
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Director: Ferdinando Cito Filomarino
  • Written By: Kevin A. Rice (screenplay by) | Ferdinando Cito Filomarino (story by)
  • Release Date: 13 August 2021
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