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"THE INTERNATIONAL"
(2009) (Clive Owen, Naomi Watts) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Moderate Heavy Extreme *Heavy Extreme
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Moderate None Heavy None Heavy
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Moderate Minor Mild Moderate Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Drama/Thriller: An Interpol agent and an assistant district attorney try to prove that an international bank is involved in criminal behavior, but must contend with witnesses who disappear or die as well as the desire of the organization's leaders to quell the investigation.
PLOT:
Louis Salinger (CLIVE OWEN) is a man on a mission and that's to bring down the International Bank of Business and Credit. That's a Luxemburg based financial giant reportedly involved in military arms dealing and the destabilizing of governments, all to capitalize on the related debt that would arise from such far-reaching, global actions.

The only problem is that any witness who's willing to testify against them ends up missing or dead. Salinger's allegations of all of that eventually caused him to lose his job with Scotland Yard, although he continues his quest now working as an Interpol agent. He has a friend and believer in New York Assistant District Attorney Eleanor Whitman (NAOMI WATTS), but she's similarly getting heat from above to prove something about the bank and its leader, Jonas Skarssen (ULRICH THOMSEN), or get off the case.

Following the deaths of an undercover agent, his potential witness, and Italian defense contractor CEO turned aspiring politician Umberto Calvini (LUCA GIORGIO BARBARESCHI), Salinger and Eleanor realize their quest has become even more dangerous, especially with Skarssen surrounded by a ruthless inner circle, including Wilhelm Wexler (ARMIN MUELLER-STAHL), who will do whatever it takes to keep the bank operational.

For the latter, that includes the use of an assassin only known as The Consultant (BRIAN F. O'BYRNE). When Salinger gets a lead on him, that results in a trip to New York where he's joined by Eleanor and local cops Iggy Ornelas (FELIX SOLIS) and Bernie Ward (JACK McGEE) who try to track down the killer.

As things become more dangerous and deadly, Salinger does what he can to expose the International for what it really is and bring down the company and everyone associated with it.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
If they're into adult thrillers and/or are fans of anyone in the cast, they might want to.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For some sequences of violence and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • CLIVE OWEN plays an Interpol agent who's been after the bank for some time, and realizes how serious and deadly they can be in protecting their assets. Nevertheless, he strives to bring them down and stretches the legal limits of his status. He also uses strong profanity.
  • NAOMI WATTS plays the Assistant D.A. in Manhattan who's working with him on the case, equally determined to prove their wrongdoing, but limited by her authority. She also uses profanity, some of it briefly strong.
  • ULRICH THOMSEN plays the bank's big boss who's involved in military matters all as a means of extending his and the bank's powerbase.
  • ARMIN MUELLER-STAHL plays one of his advisors -- and a former hardcore communist -- who isn't in favor of their latest business arrangement. Even so, he does what he must to protect the bank's interests, including the assignment of the assassin to take care of matters.
  • BRIAN F. O'BYRNE plays the assassin hired by him -- for the bank -- to kill anyone in their way.
  • LUCA GIORGIO BARBARESCHI plays a defense contractor who's also an aspiring politician who doesn't like the bank and what it's doing.
  • FELIX SOLIS and JACK McGEE play two NYPD detectives who work with Louis and Eleanor in trying to find the assassin once he's arrived in New York.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    The following is a brief summary of the content found in this dramatic thriller that's been rated R. Profanity consists of at least 8 "f" words, while other expletives and colorful phrases are also uttered. A brief line of sexually related dialogue is also present, as is the partial view of a dead man's bare butt, while classic style statues show male full frontal nudity.

    Violence consists of people being killed by various means (mostly gunfire, and there's talk of off-screen, alleged murders), and some of that has heavy amounts of bloody results. Some non lethal contact is also present. Those scenes and moments of potential peril might be unsettling and/or suspenseful to some viewers, while the action, stunts and more might be enticing for some kids to imitate.

    Various bad attitudes are present, there's a reference to a minor character being out of his mind on some sort of substance (no use is seen), and some brief smoking occurs (and a man might have chew in his mouth). Some brief tense family material is also present.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, there's some camera movement late in the film.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • Trying to find the assassin, Salinger, Iggy and Bernie pay a visit to an orthopedist who's acting strangely (as if on uppers or something similar), with one of the cops commenting on that guy being drugged out of his mind.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • An agent suddenly grabs his arm, and then vomits a great deal.
  • We see mostly covered bodies in a morgue, but Salinger and a doctor turn one over to examine the back area.
  • Salinger has a stitch on his face from where a bus' mirror accidentally hit him.
  • We see a pool of blood spreading behind an assassinated politician's head. We later see the dried blood stain of the same on the stage.
  • Eleanor has a large and bad bruise on her shoulder after a car hits her.
  • We see a flashback to the above assassination, including when the bullet strikes the politician's head, with some blood spurting out upon impact.
  • A lot of blood comes out of a man's neck after he's shot there, while Salinger's ear is bloody when he's shot there (and he has that first man's blood all over his shirt). Others are bloody to varying degrees during a massive gun battle, while Salinger pushes his finger down into one man's bullet hole wound in his chest. We also see blood coming from bullet holes in another man's chest.
  • We see a person slumped over while seated on a plaza, with a bullet hole in his jacket and some blood soaked through his vest beneath that.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • We hear that the bank is buying millions of dollars worth of missile guidance equipment.
  • Salinger states that anyone who goes up against the International disappears or ends up dead.
  • Those in power positions within the bank cover up their wrongdoing, and when that doesn't work, they have their hired assassin complete the task by getting rid of anyone getting to close to proving they're breaking the law.
  • A corrupt cop is in on an assassination, including killing the shooter and then planting a shell casing on the scene to throw off investigators.
  • Under orders from Skarssen, Wilhelm instructs the assassin to kill Salinger.
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" and/or "Blood/Gore" may be unsettling and/or suspenseful to younger viewers and/or those with low tolerance levels for such material.
  • We see an assassin preparing to shoot a political figure who's addressing a crowd outdoors. At a predetermined time, the assassin fires his gun, but the figure moves at exactly that moment, meaning the shot misses. The assassin is then surprised when another shot hits the politician in the head, killing him. A corrupt cop and his team then shoot open the assassin's door, with the cop repeatedly shooting the assassin, badly wounding him. When the others leave, the cop goes over and shoots the man in the head, killing him.
  • A person in a car purposefully drives into Eleanor, flipping her over the hood and onto the windshield. She falls to the street, the car takes off, and Salinger chases after the car, gun in hand. Yet, when he finally finds the car and aims his gun at it, the car turns out to be empty.
  • There's a multi-minute gun shootout sequence in the Guggenheim museum (see "Violence" for details).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Handguns/Machine guns/Sniper Rifle: Carried and/or used to threaten, wound or kill others and/or cause property damage. See "Violence" for details.
  • We hear that the bank is buying millions of dollars worth of missile guidance equipment (unseen).
  • We see a sniper preparing his rifle and then firing it, but it's just through a paper target, and the resultant shell casing is bagged.
  • Armed guards/police carry machine guns.
  • Iggy and Bernie wear sidearms.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "I was across the f*cking street," "This entire f*cking..." "F*ck him," "Don't you f*cking die," "No f*cking way," "I want some f*cking justice," "That means you know just about sh*t," "Don't give me that sh*t," "Who gives a sh*t," "This is total bullsh*t," "We've come up with sh*t," "Sh*t-storm," "Beats the sh*t out of me," "Sh*t if I know," "How about the last time you got laid?" "I'm more comfortable tense," "What the hell /is that supposed to mean/is going on?" "Are you insane?" "Have you lost your mind?" "You screwed up," "You flipped out," "A real bastard," "My ass on a platter," "Douche-bag" and "Son of a bitch!"
  • The action, stunts and more might be enticing for some kids to imitate.
  • Salinger fills his sink with ice water and then submerges his face into that.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A heavy amount of action-oriented, heavily dramatic, and some suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 8 "f" words, 11 "s" words, 1 slang term for sex ("laid"), 2 asses (1 used with "hole"), 2 hells, 1 S.O.B., and 1 use each of "For Christ's sakes" and "Jesus."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • As Salinger and a doctor turn over a male corpse in a morgue, we briefly see part of the bare butt.
  • Some art gallery statues show male full frontal nudity (classic style).
  • Thinking Salinger looks bad, Eleanor asks when he last got sleep or had a healthy meal (he replies he doesn't know). She then asks, "How about the last time you got laid?" He replies, "Why? Are you offering?" (She isn't and nothing happens).
  • We see miscellaneous cleavage.
  • SMOKING
  • Two men smoke in a car, while a person is seen holding a cigarette in another scene.
  • Iggy spits into a cup (we don't know if that's from chew or something else).
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Eleanor briefly talks to and then texts with a new widow via her phone or PDA.
  • There's talk of Wilhelm's wife betraying him, and his daughter committing suicide.
  • We see various people at a funeral, but don't know who they are or how they're related to the deceased (except that one's a cousin).
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Interpol agents and the comment that they don't have the authority to arrest anyone.
  • Salinger is told that the bank's dealing of small arms to third world countries isn't about profiting from that. Instead, it's about controlling the debt such conflict produces, adding that those who control debt control everything. The person then adds that the mission of all banks is to make everyone slaves to debt.
  • We hear that Wilhelm was a former, hardcore communist.
  • The comment that all governments need a bank such as the International to operate in various grey areas.
  • The comment that sometimes a person can meet their destiny while on the road trying to avoid that.
  • VIOLENCE
  • An agent suddenly grabs his arm, vomits a great deal, and falls to the street (seemingly of a heart attack, but Salinger later disputes that, saying he was poisoned). Salinger rushes through traffic to come to his aid, but the mirror on a bus strikes Salinger on the head in passing, sending him falling to the street with bad ringing in his ears.
  • We hear that a bank executive who was going to cooperate with the authorities died in a car accident (there's a newspaper photo of the car upright, but no view of the man).
  • A person bumps Salinger in passing, with him thinking he's just been poisoned like another agent. He then rushes after that person, grabs and pins them to a wall, and holds them by the throat, but then realizes he's grabbed an innocent woman and lets her go.
  • Salinger stomps down onto another man's phone to prove that it was bugged by the bank.
  • Salinger states that a former witness he had against the bank ended up dying in a car crash along with the rest of his family.
  • We see an assassin preparing to shoot a political figure who's addressing a crowd outdoors. At a predetermined time, the assassin fires his gun, but the figure moves at exactly that moment, meaning the shot misses. The assassin is then surprised when another shot hits the politician in the head, killing him. A corrupt cop and his team then shoot open the assassin's door, with the cop repeatedly shooting the assassin, badly wounding him. When the others leave, the cop goes over and shoots the man in the head, killing him.
  • A person in a car purposefully drives into Eleanor, flipping her over the hood and onto the windshield. She falls to the street, the car takes off, and Salinger chases after the car, gun in hand.
  • We see a flashback to the above assassination, including when the bullet strikes the politician's head, with some blood spurting out upon impact.
  • Salinger aims his gun at the assassin inside the Guggenheim, but someone repeatedly shoots that man first, downing him. Bernie is then shot (including in the neck, with lots of blood coming out) and falls back onto Salinger, with gunmen then approaching them, but the assassin (who's still alive) shoots one of those men, the other shoots the assassin, and Salinger shoots and wounds that other man. A massive gun battle then ensues as more men arrive, firing machine guns at Salinger and the assassin who removes his bulletproof vest, and both of those men fire back at the others. During this, Salinger is shot in the ear but keeps going, and he and the assassin shoot and kill various people, but more keep arriving and the bullets keep flying, causing all sorts of property damage. As this continues, Salinger pushes his finger into one man's bullet hole wound in his chest, causing him pain. They then struggle, with the man's machine gun firing into the air until Salinger throws him off the balcony and down a long way to the atrium floor. The assassin is then shot through his hand and then in the chest, followed by Salinger shooting up at the massive artwork hanging from the top of the atrium. It breaks and falls, with its metal structure and glass smashing down onto two assailants, presumably killing them (the museum walls and more are also riddled with bullet holes from all of that).
  • Out of frustration, Salinger repeatedly hits a dead person for dying on him before getting info from him.
  • It's implied that one of the bank officials is murdered in a car inside a highway tunnel.
  • A man hits Salinger over the head.
  • We see a person slumped over while seated on a plaza, with a bullet hole in his jacket and some blood soaked through his vest beneath that.
  • Salinger holds his gun on a man, but a third person shoots that second man before Salinger can. The victim slides down part of a roof, with the shooter holding a gun on Salinger to disarm him before then going over and shooting the wounded victim in the head (no blood or anything graphic), killing him.



  • Reviewed February 6, 2009 / Posted February 13, 2009

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