The Contract (2006)

The Contract is a thriller starring Morgan Freeman, and John Cusack. It is set in the Pacific Northwest, and is rated R.

Cusack plays Ray Keene, a high school gym teacher. His son, Jamie, played by Chris Keene is dabbling with illicit drugs, and is starting to stray from the straight and narrow to cope with the recent loss of his mother. These two decide to take a camping trip (if they were Aussies it would be a walkabout) into the forest. While strolling along, their paths cross with Frank Cardin, played by Morgan Freeman. It turns out that Cardin is an assassin who got arrested after a freak car accident. Unfortunately, Cardin was on a job, and his men decide to break him out. What follows is a chase through the woods with changing alliances as we have to decide who the bad guys really are in this character driven thriller.

Cusack and Freeman do their best to save this film, and they both are strong actors. However, even this powerhouse of a duo can't save the overall plot of The Contract. Too much of this has been done before. The squabble between the local law enforcement and the FBI is completely unoriginal, and been done too many times before. The chase through the woods reminded me of Rambo, or The Fugitive, and both are better films (yes, even Rambo). The shootouts, while loud, also offer nothing original, and neither does the usual fare of the veil of a conspiracy.

Medical Moment: When the helicopter gets shot down, and comes crashing to the ground, it it simply implausible that ALL the occupants simply get out, and walk away without a scratch. Seriously, they probably would have been dead, but for the sake of the film, they should have at least had someone fracture an extremity, or something. Walking away from a crash with no tail rotor simply wasn't happening.

Overall, this film simply feels too formulaic. Even fans of Freeman and Cusack can safely skip The Contract.

Overall Grade: C

Reviewed by Jonas

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