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Hardcore Henry (2015)

Shot in first person: Amazing or vomit inducing?

Hardcore Henry

Henry awakens with amnesia, flung into an action scene, exposited at, fights wave after wave of bad guys, and has a boss battle, while finding out what happened before.

It's a video game, isn't it?

I just watched someone play an FPS for an hour and a half, didn't I?

And it is glorious.

The premise, played very straight, is just an FPS. Henry, the protagonist, you, awaken within a laboratory with amnesia, missing a couple of limbs - which are cyborg attachments. The facility is broken into, there's a chase, fighting, the scientist you're with - romantically as well, of course - is kidnapped, you escape. The rest of the movie is pretty much set-piece after set-piece of action scenes, until the final act where all is explained.

My worry going into the film was that it would cause nausea. I've never had the problem when gaming or watching found footage films, but I knew I had never seen anything like this before. I admit, the first two or three minutes are a little jarring, but after that, nothing, so no problem at all.

While the film is basic in its plot, it is engaging enough to not feel like a lot of set piece action scenes. But the action scenes are outstanding. Ilya Naishuller plays Henry (also known as "your hands") and there's a sneaky cameo from Tim Roth. But the star of the film is Sharlto Copley, your spirit guide through the game, I mean film, and hander-out of the next mission.

It's all a little bizarre, and great fun at the same time.

The strange concept of first person works really well, and more than once I was left wondering how they achieved the effects they did without putting actors in harms way. And on a terrifically small budget.

Honestly, it's unique, and should be seen for that reason. But it's also a riot.

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