Kate: Movie Review

In all honesty, the expectations when first watching Kate were kind of low since it almost appeared to be a movie that would lean heavily into a feminist-type of story that would portray all men as scum and every woman as strong and powerful characters that didn’t need men. So, part of that came true, but not all of it thankfully since Kate is a badass without any question and Mary Elizabeth Winstead turned in a performance that was kind of like a lot of others that she’s given, but definitely more hardcore. The whole deal with Kate is that she was taken in by Varrick, played by Woody Harrelson, who felt shady to begin with, but also like he might have escaped the whole mentor turned enemy role. If you weren’t already aware, there are spoilers ahead, so if you haven’t seen the movie yet, look away or keep reading, it’s all the same to me. But the movie was one that felt like it would disappoint if one went into it with high expectations, especially since movies with female leads that people believe in can go either way, kind of like any movie. 

Those that thought this would be a blockbuster might be a little bit disappointed, but perhaps not since it was a good action movie without any question, and Winstead did put on a show that was great enough to be called worthy of watching. From the moment Kate gets to work one can see that she’s a professional but she’s not so cold-hearted that she doesn’t care about others. The fact that there’s a kid in her line of sight when she has eyes on her target is enough to make her pause, which means that she’s not so cold-blooded that she’s going to shoot first and never worry about the repercussions. But she does complete the job, which then leads to what she hopes will be the last job, and there’s where things get a little too predictable even as they get a little better. 

One great thing about this movie is that Kate isn’t some sort of superhero type individual and she’s not the indestructible hired killer that other movies might portray. This is something that’s been getting better and better over the years even as some movies have clung to the idea that the main character is invincible until they need to show some sort of weakness just to remind people that they are human. Some might want to argue that ingesting an element that can burn you up from the inside might kill you quicker than this, but that could be what the goal was, to make Kate appear to be running on sheer determination to do the right thing and to get her revenge. In doing so she had to eventually accept the aid of the person she’d been trying to kill in the first place, and by the time she finally gets to him, after running through one Yakuza goon after another, she’s been through the grinder and it’s kind of obvious. But the sheer amount of determination she continues to run on almost drains out of her completely when she discovers that it was Varrick, her own mentor and handler, that was behind her ‘retirement’. 

Along with another member of the Yakuza that plotted to overthrow the man she’d tried to kill, Kate was being tossed aside in favor of a new protege that Varrick would take under his wing, the young girl, Ani, that she eventually did her best to save. Being the niece of the man she’d tried to kill, Ani was a high-value target and someone that the other Yakuza members tried to snuff out along the way, but due to Kate’s unrelenting will and deadly skill set, she and Ani managed to find their way to the young girl’s uncle, where Kate was nearly ended. To make a long story short she did get her revenge on Varrick, as she even placed her final shot right where he’d instructed her in a flashback. Shooting him in the stomach so she could watch him die was pretty brutal, but it was efficient and it was well-deserved. 

Overall, this movie was pretty good thanks to the action and the predictable way that Kate, who spoke of wanting to retire after her final job, was betrayed by the one person in the world she trusted. The delivery method was interesting since it was essentially a suicide mission for the guy that shared a bottle of wine with her before they had sex, especially since one would think that Varrick would have done it himself. Of course, that might have been too easy, and could have altered the story a little too much. But when all is said and done this was a fun movie to watch. 

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