Will ‘Extraction 2’ be more than just a shallow action ride?
When Netflix announced that their film "Extraction" is set around locations of India and Bangladesh, everyone was excited in these regions. We don't usually see Hollywood movies surrounding the Asian premises.
This, along with the fact that the film starred none other than Chris Hemsworth, with the Russo brothers as producers, Joe Russo's script, and stunts by Sam Hargrave, who is famous for his work in Marvel films, generated considerable interest in the movie.
"Extraction" was one of the most-watched movies on Netflix, this made the streaming giant give a green light to its sequel, which is set to begin filming in six weeks.
Tyler Rake, played by Chris Hemsworth, is your typical rough and tough protagonist with a white-saviour complex. When a Mumbai crime lord's young son, Ovi Mahajan, is kidnapped by his rival Bangladeshi mobster, Rake is hired to extract him.
The plot may sound similar to the "Mission Impossible" movies, but it is adapted from the graphic novel "Ciudad", co-authored by the Russo brothers.
The highlight of the movie was an exhilarating 12-minute sequence, which was edited to give the impression of a fluid single take. In the following scenes, the protagonist rampaged through the city, raining bullets on people as if he was playing a violent videogame.
The first film left a cliffhanger as the steadfast mercenary Rake apparently sacrificed his life to save Ovi. But the teaser trailer confirmed that Rake is alive, and ready to serve us more nail-biting action scenes.
We know from the "James Bond" movies that suspected death and miraculous resurrection are a guaranteed win with fans of this genre. There is no doubt that "Extraction" takes place in Dhaka, Bangladesh. However, as it turns out, the majority of the movie was shot in India and Thailand.
Yet, the makers were successful in giving people the impression that the story is set in Bangladesh, which needs to be appreciated.
The next film might follow Rake on another mission, but this time, instead of saving someone, it would be thrilling to see him assassinate someone. The odds are that we see Ovi as the protagonist in the sequel because the brutal events of Rake's rescue mission could have desensitised him to violence and turned him into an apathetic accomplice, much like his father.
In "Extraction", there were barely any humorous dialogues from Hemsworth. His quick wit could have easily balanced the gritty and gory tone of the film.
We merely skimmed through his backstory, which made me feel a bit detached from the character.
As a viewer, I like watching morally grey characters with twisted pasts, so it will be interesting to see compelling characters like Ovi Mahajan Sr (played by Pankaj Tripathi) and Saju (played by Randeep Huda) get more screen time in the next film. I am also hoping for a richer story in the sequel, rather than just videogame-like action scenes.
The author is a freelance journalist. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.