Written by: Carroll Jenkins on September 2nd, 2015
Theatrical Release Date: USA, 2011
Director: John Stockwell
Writers: Nick Ball, John Niven
Cast: Paz Vega Paz Vega, Janet McTeer, Alphonso McAuley, Scott Mechlowicz, Christopher McDonald, Karel Roden, D.L. Hughley, Tony Curran, Michelle Lombardo, Radik Golovkov, Branko Djuric, Gordan Kicic
DVD Released: June 19th, 2012
Approximate running time: 107 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1 English
Subtitles: English, French and Spanish
DVD Release: Universal Studios
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.98
Synopsis: A hooker is on the run after a party goes bad.
There is a reason to watch this low-budget action comedy filmed in Serbia, even to own it, and that is Janet McTeer’s role and performance as hit woman Helen Bingham. Everything else is mildly entertaining filler in-between Helen’s scenes. Some of the action sequences are pretty good, others are lazy and ineffective CGI / quick cut montages. A few of the comedy bits are amusing though many are simply bizarre. Janet McTeer’s scenes are filled with a pitch-black humor that is indelibly effective even as her character rides roughshod through the majority of incidental characters.
Some of the Helen Bingham scenes of mayhem would be shocking if it weren’t for the macabre set-up. Bingham is a cold-blooded professional and it’s nothing personal, she’s just quite meticulous and efficient. Her appearance is a bit like Mary Poppins which gets her in the door, but once she’s there – your number is up. She has a catchphrase before she dispatches each unfortunate, “Do you need a moment?”. This could serve as a ‘terror bell’ to warn the squeamish to the close their eyes, but that would not spare them subjection to the sometimes nasty preliminaries that straddle the line between action comedy and torture-porn.
Once Bingham is betrayed by her employer and joins the ‘good guy’ faction, she becomes an almost sympathetic character. Not an easy feat to accomplish so the script relies upon a dinner visit with her aged mother to effect the transition. It also redresses her in an evening gown complete with ample cleavage and and bouncing bosom that increase her femininity and sets the scene for her demise as an existential heroine.
The film is well shot in crisp 2:35.1 OAR and incorporates many elaborate split screen techniques and ‘rookie card’ titles for each character that help move the story along. Extras include Deleted Scenes, Behind The Scenes, and Feature Commentary.
Without Janet McTeer on board Cat Run would be a rather pointless and meandering affair which does not proffer great expectations to the entertainment value of the sequel, prosaically titled Cat Run 2 – sans McTeer.