Movie Review: ‘Mercy’

by | May 11, 2023 | Featured, Movie Reviews, Movies | 0 comments

Greetings again from the darkness. Imagine if Liam Neeson’s character in TAKEN had also been a skilled trauma surgeon … and a woman. If so, the result would be similar to the main character here, Michelle, played by Leah Gibson. Michelle is that rare former military doctor with special ops skills. She’s also a mother to a young son, and experiences a traumatic event in the opening scene in this film from director Tony Dean Smith and writer Alex Wright.

Michelle (Ms. Gibson) returns to civilian life as a single mother and secures a job as a surgeon at a small suburban hospital where a former military affiliate is Chief of Surgery. She’s making the best of her new life, and has secured the night off work to take her son to a big soccer match for his birthday. Before they can leave the hospital, a gunshot victim arrives – one needing Michelle’s special skills. Of course, we have seen what she hasn’t … the gun shot victim is part of the local Irish mob known as the Quinn Brotherhood, and though his wounds occurred during a crime, there is a twist.

Jonathan Rhys Meyers plays Sean Quinn, the hot-headed son of Patrick Quinn (Oscar winner Jon Voight). The two butt heads as the elderly Patrick looks for a negotiated agreement under duress, while the young Sean thinks everything can be solved with intimidation and violence. Not helping matters is a rookie FBI agent who has the youngest Quinn son (the above-mentioned gunshot victim) in custody.

There is plenty of noise, gunfire, and tough-talking throughout the film, but we never believe that Michelle is in much danger – thanks to her ‘very particular set of skills.’ Although she has acted regularly for the past 15 years, we wouldn’t call Leah Gibson a familiar face. She is, however, up to the challenges of this physically demanding role. Even Jonathan Rhys Meyers is all in as the psychopath gangster, and despite his turn in “The Tudors”, he has never reached the level of stardom I predicted after MATCH POINT (2005).

Jon Voight is now 85 years old, and his storied career includes key roles in MIDNIGHT COWBOY (1969), DELIVERANCE (1972), COMING HOME (1978), MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE (1996), and a career renaissance with “Ray Donovan” … the role most similar to his character in this movie. Outside of Mr. Voight, the film has a distinct B-movie look and feel, although the clown in the hospital was a nice touch and almost made up for the lame ‘salutes’ we are subjected to.

in select theatres on May 12, 2023, and on demand on June 2, 2023. 

David Ferguson
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