Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is determined to expose an arms dealing ring responsible for facilitating acts of terrorism around the globe. But as his investigation leads Salinger and his partner, Manhattan As... more »sistant District Attorney Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts), deeper into the secret world of greed, corruption and murder, they become targets of a deadly conspiracy so vast, they soon find the only people left to trust?are each other. This pulse-pounding thriller plays a high-stakes game of suspense, intrigue and explosive action.« less
Globe trotting cloak and dagger stuff with Clive Owen as an Interpol agent investigating a major European bank that dabbles in illegal arms deals and assassinations.
"The International" is a technically well made flick with lots of purty Euro scenery and one EPIC shootout scene set in New York's Guggenheim Museum, but otherwise this one's a bit on the dry side.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Gayle V. from CLARKSVILLE, TN Reviewed on 7/21/2011...
Decent action, WONDERFUL role by Clive Owen, as always (I think the extended deleted scene was one of my favorites), but the movie itself just seemed to be all this suspense and action and then no progression was made at all as far as changing the situation. It just seemed pointless in the end. Enjoyable because of Clive (he is SO sexy when he's being noble!) but leaves much to be desired.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.
David K. from WEST PALM BCH, FL Reviewed on 1/29/2010...
Decent action flick with a slick international feel.
3 of 3 member(s) found this review helpful.
Solid work from Clive Owen, one great gunfight...and everyth
RMurray847 | Albuquerque, NM United States | 02/14/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"THE INTERNATIONAL is a film that wants to be two kinds of movies at once, and somewhat drops the ball on being either very effectively.
This tells the story of an effort by law enforcement officials to bring down The International Bank of Business & Commerce, the IBBC. This bank, we're told right from the start, is involved in weapons trading and many shady deals involving violent overthrows of governments and so forth. They don't really make money off the arms dealing, they make money handling the debt of the newly emerging governments. They are a ruthless bunch, operating like a shadowy intelligence agency...assassinating those who stand in the way, bribing others. There is no way to bring them to justice, it would seem, because they have their fingers in every pie, and will kill anyone who might get in their way.
So first, THE INTERNATIONAL wants to be an "intelligent" thriller, with lots of suspense generated by the political and economic machinations of men in business suits talking in hushed tones. We see the good guys and the bad guys both discussing with each other the ramifications of one course of action or another. There is lots of globetrotting, with scenes in Luxembourg, France, Italy, the US & Turkey. These scenes are only moderately interesting, because in the end, the schemes of the bank are only drawn out in the most simplistic terms (the movie wants us to FEEL that everything is richly detailed and complicated, but it really isn't). AND, most importantly, the actions of the bank don't really feel entirely credible. Not that a financial institution wouldn't align itself with some really bad guys...but the whole thing really just feels like a half-baked Roger Moore-era James Bond kind of plot.
The other half of the movie wants to be an action thriller of the BOURNE ilk. But the action and gunplay and forensic police work is mostly quite staid and uninspired. With one notable exception. There is a fabulously elaborate, visceral and exciting gun battle set in the Guggenheim Museum in NYC. Naturally, it relies on the old standby that all bad guys are terrible shots and good guys seldom miss...but it's a thrilling, old-fashioned sequence that makes the rest of the movie almost worthwhile.
Also worthwhile is the always solid presence of Clive Owen. Here's a guy who can really act, when given the chance. He can be charming, he can be soulless...but he's seldom boring (and he's always vaguely half-shaved...talk about swarthy). Yet true stardom has eluded him, because the truly best material doesn't go his way...or when something flat-out brilliant like CHILDREN OF MEN lands on his lap, no one goes to see it. Owen is the right man for THE INTERNATIONAL, though. He's capable of handling the talky dialogue. He seems vaguely impatient with all the chatter and politics, and just wants to get on with taking some people DOWN. And when the action does kick in, he's not just an impervious gunslinger...we see real fear and real hurt. We believe that he is a hero who COULD get killed. He brings a humanity to the most "Hollywood" of scenes and he brings movie star glamour to the most mundane of scenes. It's an interesting dichotomy.
Owen is the star of the film...no question. He is in nearly every scene, and director Tom Tykwer likes to give us lots of close-ups. But Owen is assisted by a sold supporting cast, including the always welcome Naomi Watts. Her role is seriously underwritten and probably could have been handled by anyone...but it's nice to see her anyway. The silky-voiced, menacing Armin Muehler-Stahl also shows up as one of the head honchos from the bank. This guy has THAT character down pat, and he's also always welcome.
Tykwer can be a great director (RUN LOLA RUN is a propulsive film in the best possible way)...and the gunfight shows where his true talents lie. He doesn't bring much zest to the talkier scenes, and I hope someone notices this and gives him a more action-packed thriller to helm.
Overall, I enjoyed THE INTERNATIONAL, but for most of its 118 minutes, I was quite aware that what I was seeing was not going to leave much of an impression. It's a solid but seldom exciting movie. It wants to think it has captured the flavor of our times, but it isn't rooted enough in believability. If you like Clive Owen, I'd say it's worth a look. If you're not a particular fan...then there's very little reason to spend time on it. It's a near miss."
Rexomus | Chicago | 06/10/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
""The International" is a good and honest movie. Hollywood generally doesn't release movies that are fairly original and intellectually respectful to the audience. The story deals with world bank corruption and how it's not the money that motivates them, but rather the power of enslaving nations and people with debt. If you know anything about the fractional reserve system of current banking, then this movie makes a lot of sense. I am surprised that Hollywood would release a movie like this.
The movie doesn't try to be more then it is. It does, however, take the audience on a journey to explain how the current economic situation could possibly be manipulated. The movie does follow some cliches, but I felt they were handled in original and artistic ways. The Guggenheim scene was very interesting and an original place to stage a Hollywood shootout. The story from start to finish is solid and easy to follow. There were no huge plot twists, however the character resolutions have their complexities and the finale is a little peculiar, but still gratifying and complete.
Clive Owen gives a wonderful and believable performance as a man over the edge and determined to expose the truth of this cloak and dagger organization. Naomi Watts does a good job as a supporting character and doesn't get in the way of the story, but she amplifies it when necessary.
I greatly enjoyed this movie. I skipped seeing it at the theater because it looked a little long, but after watching it on DVD my worries that the plot would be thin were put to rest. The story keeps the flow going and the audience interested the whole time."
A Timely Thriller
Carolyn Fox | 09/20/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Conspiracy theorists will enjoy the "The International". Considering the recent banking debacle, this is a timely thriller. A definite "guy flick". Blood, violence, lots of "shoot em up".
The complicated plot is sometimes hard to follow. Good photography, fast paced. Decent acting and directing.
Sometimes a man can meet his destiny . . . on the road he to
trebe | 06/05/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Director Tom Tykwer's, The International (2009) is taut, complicated, suspense thriller, with lots of intrigue, atmosphere, and mystery, that occasionally explodes with violence, as the International Bank of Business and Credit (IBBC), a multinational financial organization, is suspected of being involved in various illegal activities including murder, weapons dealing, and conspiring to destabilize governments.
Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is an Interpol agent, investigating IBBC. While in Berlin, an associate of Salinger's dies suddenly, causing Manhattan district attorney Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts), who is building the case against IBBC, to come to Berlin to head the investigation. Trying to get information about some kind of weapons deal, the pair eventually get a lead to Umberto Calvini (Luca Barbareschi) a candidate to be Italy's prime minister. Shortly after providing crucial information to the investigators, Calvini is assassinated while giving a speech in Milan. A shoe print provides the lead to the suspected assassin, who is now in New York City.
Working with the NYPD, Salinger hunts the IBBC's hitman known as the Consultant (Brian O'Byrne). They catches a break, and as their quarry is seen on the street, and followed to the Guggenheim Museum. The IBBC believes the Consultant must be eliminated, and a spectacular violent shootout takes place in the gallery. Wilhelm Wexler (Armin Mueller-Stahl), an associate with IBBC, is the key to drawing IBBC CEO Jonas Skarssen (Ulrich Thomsen) into a trap in Istanbul.
The International, is a complicated affair, where the many twists and turns, and the various players, makes matters a little difficult to keep track of. You really have to pay attention. It has kind of a cold, impersonal, businesslike tone, with Salinger being the steady driving force behind the action. Clive Owen (Shoot 'Em Up) is great in almost everything he does, and he gives a another solid performance, as the determined, but somewhat burnt out and paranoid, Salinger. The supporting cast is excellent as well. The film is well written, intelligent, moves at a quick pace, and seems mostly believable, under the direction of Tom Tykwer (Run Lola Run). The shootout in the Guggenheim is an exception to the overall realism of the film, but it smartly executed, memorable, and packs a wallop.
Tykwer and writer Eric Singer provide an informative commentary track, and the DVD also contains a nice set of bonus featurettes and an extended deleted scene. The International is an intelligent, straightforward, low key thriller, that treats its audience with respect, and does not dumb things down."
The profit to be made in 3rd world blood
R. Bagula | Lakeside, Ca United States | 11/04/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The hero is out to stopping the (International) IBBC bank's killing ways. What really happens is that he finds one hit man and leads a Italian revenge hit man to his marks, but the of weapons deals business goes on as usual with record profits. As long a greed fuels international fortunes that are made selling drugs, killing machines or anything else illegal but profitable, the banks will finance it or launder the money. This movie is sort of Scotland yard goes rogue when a former British detective joins Interpol to run down the people w\ho killed his witness and family. The movie is action packed, but gives a message that fighting the big business of crime is useless ( so why should you try?)."