American Ultra

Nima Nourizadeh
Film // August 30, 2016

Sometimes striving for absurdism or quirk doesn’t quite work out. The over-exaggerated flair and insistence on ultra-violence starts to grow weary. Its loopy premise of Jesse Eisenberg as a former secret agent being suddenly reawakened promised hijinks, but even with the occasional high-octane brawls, the film plays like a slog. There’s an obnoxious amount of cuts to various side characters that detract from the plot. Eisenberg and Stewart’s romance is unremarkable, perhaps on par with a stoner comedy. All to say American Ultra is a bad trip.