There are two words to describe this film: Hyper. Abrasive. These two words almost sum up everything wrong with this entire film. It also sums up the reason why it will not get a recommendation.
Mile 22 is directed by Peter Berg and stars Mark Wahlberg, Lauren Cohan, Ronda Rousey, Iko Uwais and John Malkovich. This film is a disappointment in all aspects given the talent involved. Peter Berg has proven himself to be a strong talent and, given his previous collaborations with Walhberg, this film really leaves one with a sour feeling.
The biggest flaw is the editing and the cinematography (and this is where those two words apply the most). The whole film is cut in a way that makes the movie felt manic sometimes; there are so many cuts per scene that the film was migraine-inducing. The smaller frame rate that was used during filming, the frantic cinematography and the rapid editing makes the film feel almost sickly. While these techniques sometimes added some intensity and presence, for the most part, it just made the film annoying and hard to watch. The action scene was sometimes decent and hard-hitting, but other times they lacked any impact due to the way they were filmed. The distracting nature of the overly theatrical cinematic techniques hampered the plot, making it incomprehensible to follow.
Berg’s direction and the screenplay don’t help much either. With the already aforementioned technical problems, the movie really couldn’t capture an atmosphere. The movie’s pace is so fast that it didn’t feel like there was any progression at all. The screenplay falters too as there is little to no depth in the dialogue, the movie’s world or the story. The movie suffers from poor execution in both the filmmaking and the storytelling front.
The cast is fine: Cohan gets a few moments to shine, Rousey is decent and Uwais, at times, is a very enjoyable villain and provided the best fight scene in the film. Wahlberg, while not awful in terms of his performance, suffered from a really poorly written character. In fact, almost every character in the film is either poorly written with almost everyone being mean-spirited or just underdeveloped. Despite the efforts of the cast, they simply can’t overcome poor characterisations.
An unfortunate disappointment, Mile 22 smothers its cast in a poorly shot and edited thriller that also suffers from a poor characterisation.