Erased (2012)

This movie was called "The Expatriate" outside the US, and that is a MUCH better name for the movie. Erased really reminds me of the Schwarzenegger movie Eraser that has absolutely nothing to do with this movie and was not similar in any way. This is more thriller than mystery, as the real mystery is why this story exists at all, and I'll have more on that later in this review.

Aaron Eckhart plays an ex-CIA agent who specializes in everything you expect CIA agents to specialize in. He seems to specialize in so many different things that he has really specialized in being a generalist. He knows about cameras, dead drops, fighting, shooting, stabbing, intelligence, breaking through pressure locks, biometric locks, stealing cars, different languages, etc. All told, he has a particular set of skills. Skills that make him a nightmare for people like the bad guys in this movie. Through the whole thing, I couldn't help but think that Liam Neeson could just as well have been put in this movie.

Liana Liberato plays Aaron's teenage daughter who just came to live with him in Belgium. She is appropriately bitchy and complains quite a bit through the whole movie, adding a nice layer of annoyance and concern into the movie. The fact is, the story isn't going to keep this movie going without good performances by the main actors, and she does a pretty good job. She's whiny, and some of the things she says and does could totally be expected from a teenage girl.

Olga Kurylenko plays Aaron's CIA handler who also had a personal relationship with him. She has conflicting interests and tried to handle the situation, but her acting is really wooden through the whole thing, and I can't say that this role would make anyone recommend her for future employment as an actress.

As I mentioned in the first paragraph, there is no reason for this story to exist. You see, there is a container that is stolen in the scene before we even meet Aaron. Aaron and his team of security experts devise ways around all of the device's security controls (not knowing that this is the goal at the time). They are portable controls on a container that contains, as we find out midway through the movie, documentation that the people who stole it really just need to destroy. You don't need to bypass controls that can be destroyed with the stuff you want to destroy - stick the whole thing in a car crusher and then toss the remnants into a vat of liquid steel and go have a beer.

Acting was decent
Cinematography was okay
Story was weak
Dialog was okay
Effects were not great

2.0/5

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