The Killer (2023) Movie: An Assassin Fights To Get Revenge

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The Killer (2023) Featured Image

The Killer (2023) Movie is a slow-burning crime thriller from the well-known American filmmaker David Fincher. For the most part, this stylish film keeps you hooked on it.

The said Hollywood movie is based on the French graphic novel series “The Killer” (2000) of the same name written by Alexis “Matz” Nolent, and illustrated by Luc Jacamon. Rather interestingly, this novel has been a passion project for David Fincher for nearly 20 years. Now, finally, in 2023, we get to see his version of the killer on the movie screen.

Synopsis [ official summary] of The Killer (2023) movie

After a fateful near-miss, an assassin battles his employers and himself, on an international manhunt he insists isn’t personal.

Spoiler-free review of The Killer (2023) movie

Director David Fincher brings in a whole lot of style

David Fincher has directed this neo-noir thriller movie about a methodical and highly motivated hitman. He brings a whole lot of style and panache to a predictable revenge tale.

Bonus info.:- This is David Fincher's first comic book movie. In the past, he had been attached to direct several others, including Blade (1998) and Spider-Man (2002), as well as unproduced adaptations of Frank Miller's Hard Boiled and Brian Michael Bendis' Torso.

Actor Michael Fassbender and his monologues dominate

The actor Michael Fassbender has played “The Killer” in an understated manner. He is a professional hitman, but his real name in this film is not revealed. In fact, he is simply known as the killer. Besides, he is portrayed as a remorseless and cold-hearted anti-hero. For a change, this contract killer is out to seek an act of bloody retribution without a payout.

The killer said a bunch of monologues and dialogues in this film. And we liked and loved, some of them, so we have shared them as quotes. These allowed us a peek into his psyche.

A hundred and forty million human beings are born every year, give or take. Worldwide population is approximately 7.8 billion. Every second, 1.8 people die. While 4.2 are born into that very, same, second. Nothing I’ve ever done will make any dent in these metrics.

The Killer (Quote #1)

So, what is the basic story of the movie?

Well, as its writer described, this is a brutal, bloody and stylish noir story of a professional assassin lost in a world without a moral compass. There is no sense of wrong and right in his little world. The killer (Michael Fassbender) is a loner with only a girlfriend Magdala (Sophie Charlotte) to keep him company. But when some of the bad people grievously hurt his female companion, he seeks the retribution of a violent kind.

Of those who like to put their faith in the inherent goodness of mankind, I have to ask, “Based on what, exactly?”

The Killer (Quote #2)

But, who is The Killer?

Driven by restrained anger, The Killer does not let his emotions get the better of him. He is like a highly trained killer. As its writer described, he is solitary and cold. He is methodical and unencumbered by scruples or regrets. Driven by loads of patience, more often than not, he waits in the shadows and watches for his target, without being noticed by them. In short, he is the master of the craft of killing with only a rare failure in his resume.

Consider yourself lucky if our paths never cross, except luck isn’t real, nor is karma, or sadly, justice.

The Killer (Quote #3)
Bonus info.:- A few movies directed by  David Fincher are - Gone Girl (2014), The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011), The Social Network (2010), Zodiac (2007), Panic Room (2002), Fight Club (1999), The Game (1007), Se7en (1995), etc.

What aspect we did not like?

We have seen all the movies (named in the above para) directed by David Fincher in the last two decades. And we loved and liked all of them. Most of them are great crime dramas. Now, in this film, David Fincher has adopted the approach of visual storytelling. Perhaps, its graphic novel origin has played a part in it.

“Stick to your plan. Anticipate, don’t improvise. Trust no one. Never yield an advantage. Fight only the battle you’re paid to fight.”

The Killer (Quote #4)

So, as the above quote shows, “The Killer” breaks his own mantra for his reprisal. However, we find it quite strange that the audience is not really rooting for this anti-hero. As he goes on an avenging spree. Just to share an example, in another anti-hero film “John Wick”, the viewers got motioned attached to him and his retribution.

Hence, we think that this film lacks emotional depth. Therefore, we failed to empathize with the killer. Maybe, the storyteller intended it that way. But we did not like these aspects.

Then, one character played by Michael Fassbender (The Killer) dominates the entire film. While the other characters do not have any substantial role to play in it.

Still, there are many things to like in this neo-noir thriller and the conclusion

So, Sophie Charlotte (Magdala), Tilda Swinton (The Expert), Charles Parnell (The Lawyer – Hodges), Kerry O’Malley (Dolores), Arliss Howard (The Client – Claybourne), Sala Baker (The Brute) and others do not get enough screen time. Still, they all played their part, especially actor and stuntman Sala Baker (The Brute), who along with Michael Fassbender is good in the fight scene.

No doubt this film shines in its action sequences and we liked that. It features very well-executed hand-to-hand combat scenes in one of the chapters titled “The Brute”. The story of this action movie has been divided into six chapters. We are not sharing their details here. If you wish to read about it, then check the spoilers alerts below. Okay.

From the beginning of history, the few have always exploited the many. This is the cornerstone of civilization. The blood and mortar that binds all bricks. Whatever it takes, make sure you’re one of the few, not one of the many.

The Killer (Quote #5)
Bonus info.:- The Killer used a list of all 9 aliases in the film: 
Felix Unger - The Odd Couple (1970) 
Archibald Bunker - All in the Family (1971) 
Oscar Madison - The Odd Couple (1970) 
Howard Cunningham - Happy Days (1974) 
Reuben Kincaid - The Partridge Family (1970) 
Lou Grant - Lou Grant (1977) 
Sam Malone - Cheers (1982) 
George Jefferson - The Jeffersons (1975) 
Robert Hartley - The Bob Newhart Show (1972)

In addition, the cinematography, editing, music and background music are of high quality. We liked that. To conclude, it is a good time pass film to watch despite its predictable tale.

Rating of David Fincher’s 2023 movie about an assassin

FM’s rating3.75/5
FM’s short commentsFilm director David Fincher and his lead actor Michael Fassbender join hands to bring “The Killer” book alive on screen. In this neo-noir crime thriller, they have done a good job of keeping us engaged in its revenge drama. Many action movie fans might particularly like one of the action sequences in The Brute chapter. In short, despite its predictability, it is a good watch.
FM Rating – The Killer (2023) movie.

Spoilers alert – the story of David Fincher’s 2023 movie about an assassin

Beginning – how it all started to go wrong for the killer.

Chapter 1 – Paris / Employment

The Killer is unable to assassinate his intended target despite his elaborate preparation. Thereby, a domino effect or chain reaction is set in motion in his life.

In a way, it is a case study of a man alone, armed to the teeth and slowly losing his mind. As he prepares for the repercussions of his failure to kill his target.

Middle – his home and companion are targetted
End – then he seeks violent revenge

Chapter 2 – Dominican Republic / The Hideout

His home is ransacked by the other set of professional killers. Besides, his girlfriend Magdala somehow stayed alive, as those killers failed to kill her.

Or maybe it was an intended act. Or perhaps a big mistake on their part.

Chapter 3 – New Orleans / The Lawyer (Hedges)

The Killer is angry and vows to punish all those people (clients & assassins) who attacked Magdala. How dare they enter his safe heaven – his secret home.

Chapter 4 – Florida / The Brute

This chapter has one of the best-choreographed action scenes. It is a raw and brutal fistfight. Not to forget his classic take on Florida and the dangerous dog.

Chapter 5 – New York / The Expert

Once again, along with The Killer, we travel to another town and meet another professional assassin involved in the attack. This time it was a lady – a hitwoman.

Chapter 6 – Chicago / The Client

Lastly, we meet Clayborne – the wealthy client, who not only paid for the original assassination in Paris but also footed the bill for the attack on The Killer’s home.

Please note that we are not sharing the detailed story of each chapter and what happened in each of them. As it might ruin your viewing pleasure.

However, we can tell you that this film has an average of one kill per chapter.

So, the total body count is six people, and all of them are killed by The Killer.

Poster of The Killer (2023) movie

The Killer (2023) movie Poster
The Killer (2023) Movie Poster

Key details of the story of David Fincher’s 2023 movie about an assassin

GenreAction, Adventure, Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Original languageEnglish (USA)
Age-restrictions A (18+)
Duration1 hour 58 minutes
ReleasedOctober (Theatres), 2023 & November (OTT), 2023
WritersAlexis Nolent, Luc Jacamon, & Andrew Kevin Walker
Director David Fincher
CastMichael Fassbender (The Killer), Sophie Charlotte (Magdala), Tilda Swinton (The Expert), Charles Parnell (The Lawyer – Hodges), Kerry O’Malley (Dolores), Arliss Howard (The Client – Claybourne), Sala Baker (The Brute), Gabriel Polanco (Leo), Emiliano Pernía (Marcus), Endre Hules (The Target), etc.
AwardsVenice Film Festival – 2023 Winner Soundtrack Stars Award – Special Mention Best Soundtrack Trent Reznor Atticus Ross
TaglinesExecution is Everything.
About – The Killer (2023) movie

Trailer of The Killer (2023) movie

Official Trailer – The Killer (2023) movie – Netflix | YouTube.

Featured Image and Poster of The Killer (2023) movie | Netflix.

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