Verdict: A fast-paced revenge thriller with killer action.
Pierre Morel is no stranger to directing films with parents who will do anything for their children. He’s the one who had directed Taken and now he’s back with another thriller that has a parent going after those who harmed her child. If you loved seeing Liam Neeson as a badass father, now you can see Jennifer Garner as a badass mom in Peppermint.
What’s Peppermint About:
Riley North’s (Jennifer Garner) husband and daughter are gunned down by members of a drug cartel in the middle of a Christmas carnival on her daughter’s birthday. She barely survives to identify the killers to the two detectives in charge of the case – Carmichael (John Gallagher Jr.) and Beltran (John Ortiz). But when the court fails to prosecute them, she loses faith in the system. She decides to take justice into her own hands and go after everyone who failed her, including the drug lord Diego Garcia (Juan Pablo Raba). As the authorities close on her to stop the killings, one question remains – will she be able to get her revenge?
Jennifer Garner wins at playing an action star in Peppermint. Not only does she have several action sequences but her portrayal of Riley North also makes us empathize with her character. It’s not always easy to side with vigilante justice but Peppermint does well to convince us of the motivations behind the violent path that Riley chooses.
The film also moves at a dizzying pace. There’s little time wasted before we see Jennifer Garner in action. She’s focused in her plan and quickly moves from one kill to the next. There are also a few twists in Peppermint that make the climax more satisfying.
What Could Have Been Better:
There is a five-year gap that the film practically skips over where the suburban mother becomes a ruthless killer that we wish we would have got to see. Besides this, there are a few things that go unexplained but it’s the type of film where you don’t think too much and just enjoy the ride.
Why You Should Watch:
If you’re a fan of revenge flicks or female-led action flicks, Peppermint won’t disappoint you. It’s also a great watch if you just want to see murderous action where an ambiguously good heroine goes after the bad guys who heartlessly killed the people she loved.