Hypnotic 2023 Movie Review
While watching “Hypnotic,” I couldn’t help but notice that it lacks the essence and vision of a Robert Rodriguez film; at the same time, it also lacks the distinctive touch of any notable director. Instead, it falls into the realm of generic, direct-to-streaming movies that have flooded the market over the past decade. But all of that said, I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t enjoy this movie, because I did.
I’m a die-hard Ben Affleck fan, so take this review with a grain of salt, because I am biased in that regard; it’s always enjoyable to watch him on the big screen, and his performance in “Hypnotic” is no exception, even if he did look like he hated his life in the role. It’s clear he’s not giving it his all in this performance, but for me personally, it didn’t detract from the viewing experience (and to give you another perspective, my mum, who is not a Ben Affleck fan, thought he was great in his role, so keep that in mind). Regardless, the point I am trying to make in this paragraph is that – for me – Affleck’s presence immediately added entertainment value to the film; but, taking Affleck out of the equation, how does the movie stack up? Not half bad, but not all that good either – a guilty pleasure if you will.
You see, “Hypnotic” feels like any other straight-to-Netflix movie released during the pandemic era – the movie embraces its cheesiness with a washed-out visual style, a seemingly shoestring budget, and so called “action sequences” that lean more toward generic car crashes than intricately choreographed fist fights and thrilling shootouts. It’s nothing particularly exciting or innovative, but all of it is wrapped around a story that did genuinely have me engaged. Being about a “detective who investigates a mystery involving his missing daughter and a secret government program,” (shouts out IMDb for the synopsis), “Hypnotic” is – at first – like nothing that you haven’t already seen. However, as the film progresses, I have to admit that the movie took me by surprise, going places that I genuinely didn’t expect, leading to a second half and a final act that had me legitimately intrigued, if not riveted.
I’m finding this an increasingly hard movie to review, because while I wouldn’t recommend it and wouldn’t say that it’s good, something about it struck some type of chord with me; “Hypnotic” doesn’t work as an action movie, and it doesn’t work as a drama, but it does work as a B-movie science-fiction mystery that has enough entertainment value through its twists and turns to keep you guessing. By no means a theatre experience, if you’re going to watch this, watch it at home with some friends and a couple of beers – no doubt the ideal viewing method. This is a ridiculous one, but it’s one that you can definitely have some fun with as long as you temper your expectations and realize that, while this isn’t a good film, it is an entertaining one.