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The Protégé Reviews Are Online, Here's What Critics Are Saying About The New Action Movie

Maggie Q in The Protégé

Summer might be winding down, but the summer movie releases just keep on coming. This weekend, the action thriller The Protégé will debut in theaters, featuring Michael Keaton, Maggie Q, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Patrick, and Patrick Malahide. Maggie Q plays Anna, the world’s most skilled contract killer who was raised by the legendary assassin Moody. But when Moody is killed, she seeks revenge. As Anna becomes entangled with an enigmatic killer, their confrontation turns deadly, and the loose ends of a life spent killing weave themselves ever tighter.

The Protégé, directed by Martin Campbell (Casino Royale), is now available only in theaters. Critics have started sharing their reviews of the thriller, so let’s take a look at what they’re saying.

Let's start with the CinemaBlend side, as usual. Dirk Libbey was somewhat disappointed with the action flick, rating it 2.5 out of 5 stars. While he gives high praise to Maggie Q, noting that she is an excellent action lead, he thought the rest of the film was too familiar. Libbey thought the mystery aspect got lost in the mix and that it felt awkward when the characters knew all of the answers but the audience was still left in the dark. Overall, he called The Protégé a missed opportunity, saying:

Maggie Q is so good that it elevates one's expectations, but for the most part The Protégé fails to deliver.

Mary Sollosi from Entertainment Weekly also commended Maggie Q’s performance, but noted that the action sequences lost their intrigue as the plot got more convoluted. Sollosi considered the writing “uninspired” and silly, and though the thought Keaton elevated the “bland” material, she considered The Protégé a flop, saying:

Martin Campbell's cat-and-mouse assassin thriller is self-aware enough as a kinetic genre entry. As it spills more blood and more convoluted backstory, however, it reveals an empty center.

While John DeFore of The Hollywood Reporter thought the cast of The Protégé was excellent, that’s about where his praise stopped. He commented that the storyline was just dumb and the writing cringe-worthy, and said the same about the attempt to set up a banter-y romance between Q and Keaton. DeFore said:

It tries so hard to make you think it’s smart that its dumbness is impossible to forgive.

Mark Kennedy from Associated Press was also disappointed with the action thriller. He thought it asked too much from viewers, as it could never quite figure out the kind of movie it wanted to be. While he enjoyed Keaton and Jackson’s performances, he thought there was a hollowness to Q’s role. Kennedy also criticized the clumsy writing and storyline overall, saying:

So many cliches abound. Do all baddies have to drive shiny black Range Rovers and wear thick gold necklaces over their turtlenecks?

Aaron Neuwirth from We Live Entertainment had a much more positive opinion of The Protégé than these previous critics. He applauded Campbell’s direction of the action sequences, as well as the overall balance of action, story, and character. He also enjoyed the performances of Q, Keaton, and Jackson, as well as the script, and stated:

I am more than impressed with what I got from this latest entry in contract killer cinema.

Well, it seems like most critics are pretty disappointed with the thriller. But will audiences agree? We'll soon find out, as the film is available in theaters now.

After you check out The Protégé, make sure you haven't missed any other summer flicks with our release guide.