“Taken” director Pierre Morel’s “Peppermint” is one of those films for which you expect it to be a good one for its key character, played by Jennifer Garner, but it ends up disappointing you.
The action-thriller doesn’t interest you at all with anything original but the cliché-stuffed story and routine action scenes. Also, a women-centric action-packed vigilante film doesn’t always work without an engaging storyline.
Watch the movie trailer of “Peppermint”
In the first few minutes, “Peppermint” follows Riley North (Garner) a middle-class woman, who leads a decent life with her husband and daughter. Her husband Chris owns a mechanic shop, and everything looks usual.
It’s when one of Chris’ friends shares the plan of robbing a powerful drug kingpin, that things go downhill. Although Chris turns him down, the news already reaches the drug lord and now he wants to set an example by gunning down Chris’ family.
As Riley and Chris take their daughter to a carnival for her birthday, they soon get attacked by gunmen and only Riley survives with a gunshot wound.
When a corrupt system doesn’t deliver justice, Riley decides to take the matter into her own hand. Five years later, Riley returns with enough weapons to take on a corrupt system and the criminals involved in the murder of her family.Sounds odd and silly that the movie is titled "Peppermint" with reference to a scene where Riley's daughter orders that ice cream flavor. Click To Tweet
So, the plot is okay, to begin with, but we all have already watched such movies umpteen times. Probably, the writer of “Peppermint” could have focused more on Riley’s struggle after the murder of her family and the time she spends in honing varied skills.
Revenge action should not be the sole focus here, but there should be some emphasis on how a mild-mannered mom becomes so strong.
Moreover, when we talk about such action and violent films, including “Death Wish” (1974), we find realistic stories with elements of suspense and interesting characterizations to bring that emotional connection. All these together make such films successful.
Pierre Morel’s “Peppermint” has little characterization and the narrative was never consistent to at least have that emotional punch. While he is known for directing action films like “District 13” and “Taken,” this one needed some special treatment, even with clean and slick action scenes.
Director: Pierre Morel
Starring: Jennifer Garner, John Ortiz, John Gallagher Jr.
Writer: Chad St. John
Genres: Crime Films, Action Thrillers
Release Date: September 7, 2018