MOVIE REVIEW: “Blackhat”

Release Date: January 16, 2015

Running Time: 2 hours and 13 minutes

Rated R for violence

Grade: B-

Directed By: Michael Mann


Chris Hemsworth as Nick Hathaway

Leehom Wang as Chen Dawai

Wei Tang as Chen Lien

Viola Davis as FBI Agent Carol Barrett

Andy On as Hong Kong Police Inspector Alex Trang

Holt McCallany as FBI Agent Jessup

Ritchie Coster as Kassar

John Ortiz as Henry Pollack

Spencer Garrett as Gary Baker


He’s a convicted hacker serving 15 years,

MIT, genius coder…

When a nuclear plant in Hong Kong experiences a malfunction in the coolant pumps causing an explosion, the Chinese government suspect that a computer hacker is responsible. Captain Chen Dawai, an officer in the cyber warfare unit, is assigned to investigate the case. Shortly after, the Merchantile Trade Exchange in Chicago experiences a rapid increase in its soy commodities. The FBI learn that the hacker responsible for the trading spike used a Remote Access Tool. Together the two forces unite to track down the person who is behind both events. Dawai enlists the assistance of his sister, Lien, and pleads with the FBI for the prison release of his former college roommate, Nick Hathaway, whom he believes is the best man to help them solve the cyber crimes before more damage occurs. It’s a race against time as Hathaway, Dawai, and Lien travel across the globe following clues as to who is responsible and why.

The moment you connect, you lose control. This isn’t about money. This isn’t about politics. I can target anyone, anything, anywhere.

With Blackhat, Michael Mann produces/directs another film with a complex storyline and his own unique style. Known for his seven Academy Award nominated film, The Insider, Mann makes it very clear that his intent is to deliver an extremely realistic technological movie. While ‘techies’ will appreciate the dedication to accuracy in the cyber world, the plot doesn’t quite keep pace with the detailed information being relayed. The cast includes notable actors such as Chris Hemsworth and Viola Davis who bring their talent to the table while making the best of the lines that they have to deliver. Unlike Mann’s previous work, the cinematography was a little challenging to watch at times due to several close-ups and shaky camera work especially during the action scenes. What Mann does really well here are the scenes that the audience can relate to such as the intrusion into ordinary life through technology and the visuals of the characters experiences. Break the code and enter the theater to see this one!                                    ~Movie Buffette

About Laura McDonald