xXx: Return of Xander Cage
The last forty minutes of the movie do come together in a pretty diverting way.
It's not often a thriller keeps me wound up as well as "Headhunters" did. I knew I was being manipulated and didn't care. It was a pleasure to see how well it was being done. Unlike too many thrillers that depend on stunts, special effects and the Queasy-Cam, this one devises a plot where it matters what happens. It's not all kinetic energy.
It's from Norway. Why has Scandinavia been producing such good thrillers? Maybe because their filmmakers can't afford millions for CGI and must rely on cheaper elements like, you know, stories and characters. "Headhunters" deserves comparison with "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo," "Insomnia" and "Let the Right One In."
At its center is an everyman, Roger Brown, who is an executive headhunter. While interviewing job candidates, he learns information that's invaluable in his second job, as an art thief. He needs the money and tells us why: He's keenly aware that he stands 5-foot-6 and is married to Diana, a statuesque blond. On her he lavishes expensive gifts and a luxurious lifestyle and even sets her up with her own art gallery. He doesn't believe she could love him for himself.
Brown (Aksel Hennie) is a smooth-talking type with the cool nerve necessary to enter homes and replace valuable paintings with deceptive reproductions. At a gallery opening, Diane (Synnøve Macody Lund) introduces him to a new client: Clas Greve (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). This man looks like trouble. Tall, chiseled, confident, he has just resigned as CEO of a multinational, and Brown would like to recruit him for a rival firm. He's persuasive. He won't stop until the man agrees to lunch.