Three assassins deal with life, love, addiction and trust as each tries to find the answers to a better life. Together, they prove to be the most trustworthy in this tangled web of murder, greed, friendship and betrayal.
“Assassins Tale” has some good qualities. The characters are eccentric and complex. Some of the dialogue is quite clever, although there is often too much of it. The editing is impressive, although it sometimes becomes intrusive and distracting. It has a few nice touches, such as the bit with the casino chips.
On the down side, it tries too hard to emulate Tarantino in stead of carving out it’s own identity. Even the poster art features a putatively female assassin with a katana who has apparently wreaked considerable havoc and destruction, although the image has nothing to do with the film. We have assassins who wax poetic on life, sex and philosophy and occasionally decide to defy orders and logic by allowing their targets to live. One of the assassins is a heroin addict. The movie breaks for musical interludes, although not of the caliber of the “Cat People” segment in “Inglourious Basterds.”
It’s passable low-budget entertainment, although it has some major flaws. The cinematography is marred by extended jiggly-cam shots that will leave the audience reaching for the Dramamine. Even the sweeping pans look as if they were shot by somebody in the midst of an epileptic seizure. The pistols often look like plastic toys. Make- up effects for wounds are basically nonexistent. The film switches between color and monochrome for no apparent reason other than to draw attention to the editing.
The actors talk and emote fairly well, but acting is about action. The two words have a common root. We call people in movies actors, not emoters or talkers. There are no car chases. The only time anybody operates a vehicle is in one shot where they drive into the scene. There’s a little walking. One character swims. Another carries a surfboard on to the beach. But there is no fighting , climbing, horseback riding, etc. It’s pretty much limited to people sitting or standing around talking and occasionally drawing weapons and shooting one another, interrupted by long transitions and unnecessary establishing shots.