Extraction ★★

Extraction is something of a frustrating experience. On the one hand, everybody involved clearly gave it their all. The performances are strong, the action is very well staged and choreographed, and the film generally looks good. Unfortunately, it all falls apart with the story.

Now, not every action movie needs to have a good story to be good. In fact, some amazing action films have stories that are just there. However, the story needs to fit the film. Extraction never really finds the proper balancing act there, and instead the story takes away from the action.

The film has a lot of twists, but rather than feeling like natural progressions of the story, they feel thrown in for the sake of having twists. Thus, the viewer is often trying to figure out what's going on when they should be focusing on the strong stunt work. Some Characters switch allegiances willy nilly throughout the runtime. Others are introduced, chew scenery, then die without having literally any impact on the story. The story beats and character backstories that are easy to follow are usually incredibly cliched, and treated too seriously to really take seriously.

It feels like Extraction wanted to be a more grounded John Wick, but rather than putting in the effort to craft a story with some real meaning, it just threw a lot at the wall to see what stuck. Unfortunately, this often covers up the real gems in the film, namely Hemsworth's performance and the stunt work. It's definitely worth seeing if you're just interested in some strong action filmmaking, just be warned that there's a lot of weak stuff played incredibly straight to wade through to get there.