The Killer (2023)

by | Apr 5, 2024 | 2020s, Crime, Featured Films, Film Reviews, Thriller | 0 comments

A Killer Fincher Film? A Look at David Fincher’s “The Killer”


Release date: 3 September 2023 (Initial release)
Genre: Thriller/Crime
Director: David Fincher
Cinematographer: Erik Messerschmidt
Budget: $175 million USD (rumoured)
Box office: $452,208 USD


3 MIN Read Time


David Fincher is back, and this time, he’s taking us into the mind of a professional killer. “The Killer,” released in September 2023, has been stirring up conversation (and a little controversy) among film fans. But is it a Fincher classic, or a miss for the director? Let’s delve into the shadows and see what lurks beneath the surface.


A Story Steeped in Morality’s Murky Waters

“The Killer” follows a meticulous assassin named Armand (played by Michael Fassbender). Armand prides himself on his precision and detachment. However, after a hit goes wrong, he’s plagued by a nagging suspicion that he’s losing his edge. Is it paranoia, or something more sinister at play? The story unfolds as Armand races to complete his next assignment while also trying to understand the psychological cracks forming in his carefully constructed world.

Fincher, known for his neo-noir style and exploration of morality’s gray areas, doesn’t shy away from the brutality of Armand’s profession. The violence is unflinching, but never gratuitous. However, some viewers have found Armand’s lack of remorse off-putting. Fincher isn’t trying to create a sympathetic anti-hero; instead, he forces us to confront the allure and emptiness of a life built on death.


Behind the Scenes: A Fincher Masterclass in Technical Precision

Fincher’s meticulous attention to detail is legendary, and “The Killer” is no exception. Filmed in a dark, almost monochromatic palette, the movie creates a suffocating atmosphere that perfectly reflects Armand’s internal turmoil. The camerawork is both elegant and unsettling, mirroring Armand’s methodical approach to his kills.

Fincher reportedly spent months storyboarding every scene, a testament to his desire for visual control. This dedication pays off in the film’s tense, well-choreographed action sequences. While not an all-out action flick, “The Killer” delivers bursts of brutal violence that are both shocking and strangely beautiful.


A Stellar Cast, Anchored by a Flawless Fassbender

Michael Fassbender delivers a career-defining performance as Armand. He embodies the character’s chilling detachment with a quiet intensity, drawing us into Armand’s world without ever excusing his actions. Supporting roles are well-played, but this is truly Fassbender’s show.

There were whispers during filming of a potential breakout role for newcomer Jessica Brubaker, who plays a detective on Armand’s trail. While her performance is solid, the script doesn’t quite give her enough meat to truly shine. Perhaps a future sequel could rectify this.


A Mixed Reception, But Fincher Fans Rejoice

“The Killer” didn’t exactly break the box office, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing for a Fincher film. His movies are known for their cult followings, and “The Killer” seems to be following suit. Reviews have been mixed, with some praising the film’s technical brilliance and Fassbender’s performance, while others found the story slow and the protagonist unlikable.

Here’s the thing: “The Killer” isn’t a crowd-pleaser. It’s a dark, disturbing dive into the psyche of a killer. If you’re looking for a popcorn flick with a clear-cut hero and villain, this might not be your cup of tea. But for those who appreciate Fincher’s brand of psychological suspense, “The Killer” is a must-watch.


Final Verdict: A Fincher Film for the Fincher Faithful

“The Killer” is a slow burn, a character study disguised as a thriller. It’s not for everyone, but for those who appreciate Fincher’s unique vision, it’s a film that will stay with you long after the credits roll. Whether it ranks among Fincher’s best is a question for time to answer, but one thing’s for sure: “The Killer” is a well-crafted, thought-provoking film that demands to be seen




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