Movie Review: Extraction

Photo by NETFLIX

Extraction is not a movie that will generate applause among critics, but it is perfect for a light Friday night Netflix viewing with friends or family. For Hibiki readers, however, it is worth noting that the movie is set in India and Bangladesh. 

The movie follows the story of Tyler Rake (Chris Hemsworth), a mercenary hired by an imprisoned Mumbai gangster to rescue his son Ovi Mahajan (Rudhraksh Jaiswal) from Bangladesh’s biggest drug lord Amir Asif (Priyanshu Painyuli). 

Directed by first-timer and acclaimed stunt director Sam Hargrave, it is the newest addition to the growing list of “What you see is what you get” cinema. Over 80% of the film was shot in various locations across India and Bangladesh which provides breathtaking visuals and grounded sets for this high action piece.

Hemsworth, popular for his performances in the Thor franchise, yet again dons the avatar of a superhero mercenary in this action-packed adventure. His chiseled looks and brooding personality is perfectly complemented by the vision of his director Hargrave who was the stunt director in several films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise. 

The South Asian cast is led by Indian actor Randeep Hooda who plays Saju, Ovi’s protector. Known mostly for his roles in Indian art films such as Sarbjit and Once Upon a Time in Mumbai, Hooda once again excels in a part that largely celebrates his fine versatility and range. His performance is the only one that touches the heart in this otherwise soulless film. Jaiswal, who shares the lead with Hemsworth, impresses the audience with a really mature performance considering he is only 16.

Hargrave’s first attempt at directing can be summed up to be a string of carnage woven together with some degree of characterization and plot. His experience in the stunt department helps bring out some of the cleanest combat scenes filmed in recent times. 

The movie ends with a cliffhanger and baffles the viewers with an ambiguous conclusion that opens the doors for a possible sequel in the future. Hargrave, speaking to Collider, said “What would hopefully happen is people will be discussing that afterward, and you get to say which one you feel is right for you.”

Releasing the film at a time when movie releases are getting postponed or canceled, Netflix has been churning out much-needed content for all types of audiences. That may be reason enough to watch this film. It’s not going to offer anything new and it is definitely not going to result in any sleepless nights as you ponder the minuscule details of the film. But if you’re looking for mindless, intense action featuring over the top stunts and straight out of the book dialogues that take place in a familiar locale, it’s our top pick