Headhunters (2011)


A successful headhunter leads a double life as a vintage-art thief to finance an increasingly extravagant lifestyle. Things take a turn for the worse when his latest heist involves stealing a painting from a ex-mercenary who may well be romantically involved with his wife….


“Headhunters” is topsy-turvy thriller and never quite what it seems. The basic plot involves our art thief on the run from the world’s best ‘tracker’, a former soldier of fortune with some considerable expertise in hunting down men….but this is all complicated by the inclusion of a woman who shares pillowtalk with both of them and a very big ‘deal’ about to come to fruition in the headhunting industry. The scene is therefore set for some loopy plot-twists and a huge dose of male-bravado-loving action sequences.

Technically, the film is very well-made. There are all kinds of shots, zooms and interesting angles as well as some great views of chillingly metallic corporate structures and the desolate Norwegian countryside. A top-notch cast and an involving script are other big positives in a film which really clicked with me. I liked the fact that the movie’s arch-villain switches after the first 40 minutes or so; “good guys” become “bad guys” and vice-versa.  As an example, we end up feeling surprised at the level of empathy we harbour for a crooked gun-toting  security officer (and prostitute-enthusiast) when he meets his sorry demise.

This is a multi-layered movie which is littered with (un?)intentional comedy and some marvelously eccentric characters. Both come together to leave the audience with a number of really memorable moments. One in particular concerns our protagonist burying himself in human excrement beneath the floorboards of an outside-lavatory to avoid detection by his relentless pursuer.

My minor gripes are really quite pedantic. I don’t like the voice-over narration at the beginning and end of the movie – it is a bit needless and annoyingly philosophical in a similar way to the one employed in “Blade Runner”  – and nor did I find the whole thing very plausible. But then again, this is a film, not the real world. I, as a movie-goer, just want to be entertained.

I finished this one wanting to stay in my seat for the next screening – that’s how much I enjoyed it. A great movie.

Note:  “Headhunters” is in Norwegian with English subtitles.

hotdog rating: 8/10


About hotdogcinema

film fan

Posted on May 20, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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