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The Numbers Station Reviews

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Al S

Super Reviewer

June 24, 2013
An intelligent, fresh and high-octane edge of your seat thriller that's laced with explosive action and character development. A sharp and well-crafted movie with gripping performances. John Cusack and Malin Akerman are right on the money, have have engaging chemistry and give strong and rather soulful performances. Cusack hits all the right notes and shines. Akerman is charismatic and gives plenty of heart to her role. Liam Cunningham is terrific. Director, Kasper Barfoed keeps the films pace moving good and it keeps your attention firmly on the main characters in isolated locations to give a more claustrophobic feel. An explosively entertaining action-packed thrill-ride
LWOODS04
LWOODS04

Super Reviewer

June 9, 2013
It wasn't great nor awful. It fell somewhere in between. I am usually biased when it comes to John Cusack films. I am and have been a huge fan of his for forever. In my opinion he never turns out a bad performance. He just has the misfortune of being in bad films.
The movie reminded me a bit of Wanted. Not nearly as good though, but still worth seeing if you get a chance.
MANUGINO
MANUGINO

Super Reviewer

June 12, 2013
The code has never been compromised. Until now..

Mediocre movie! This movie is like those novels from authors you've never heard about sold at petrol stations and supermarkets, the kind of fiction that exists purely to shift a small portion of units to generate some kind of income. A potboiler, really. Just a way to keep food on the table for the screenwriter and add to the revenue streams of the film company, in some small way. There is precisely nothing exciting, interesting or original about this movie. It's just a copy-paste straight to DVD thriller flick about spies and stuff. Hire the cameramen, find some location to shoot it, get the actors there on time, let's get this crap over and done with and move on with our lives. That's all I got from the Numbers Station. Nothing but a money grab. This is why piracy exists, because film companies are so utterly uncompetitive.

When the moral values of a longtime wetwork black ops agent is tested during his last operation, he receives an unfavorable psych evaluation. Now he is given a break and a seemingly uncomplicated assignment of simply protecting the security of a young female code announcer, code resources and remote station they are assigned to. After an ambush and one phone call later, it becomes a complicated fight for their survival.
Dann M

Super Reviewer

December 3, 2013
A stereotypical espionage thriller, The Numbers Station is competent enough but isn't very engaging. When a US secret intelligence base is attacked a CIA agent and a cryptographer have to hold off a strike team and regain control of the dispatch system in order to stop a series of assassinations. John Cusack and Malin Akerman lead the cast and give solid performances. However, the writing is rather poor and employs some insane logic in regards to how the CIA works. While it's fairly entertaining and delivers some thrills, The Numbers Stations is formulaic and predictable.
Todd S

Super Reviewer

February 20, 2013
John Cusack is a terrific actor and he proves it once again in The Numbers Station. Recently, Cusack has done a lot more direct-to-video stuff, deciding to be a big fish in a much smaller pond, and it has worked out very well. The Numbers Station is a secret CIA base in a secluded part of England, where encoded messages are sent to agents in the field. Emerson (John Cusack) was one of those agents, until his conscience caught up with him, and he is assigned to guard the station, a quiet, lonely job, until terrorists break in, and he is the last line of defense. A movie like this, with a small cast in a secluded location, only works if the stars of the film can keep you're attention and make the story believable, and both Cusack and Malin Akerman both do a terrific job of it. This movie is more about the intensity of the situation and the reaction of the people involved than it is about killing bad guys, and that is why Cusack was perfect choice for the lead in this film. Few actors bring the experience of intensity that John Cusack brings to a project. The story here, wasn't anything unique or extraordinary, but it was an action film from a more psychological point of few. Most action films are more about big explosions and special effects, the story is secondary, but in The Numbers Station, things are reversed and that's why I liked it so much. It's a fun film, that will keep you guessing, with a cast that will engage you the whole way. It may have been an independent direct-to-video film, but it has the bite of a much larger beast.
February 25, 2014
The enemy never feels threatening, a major problem for a movie that revolves around an enemy.

The basic premise (compromised code station) is promising, but everything about The Numbers Station feels sub. Sub-par. Sub-effort. Sub-budget. Nothing clicks enough to become engaging.

As a stream on Netflix it works fine enough to burn some time and consume some popcorn, but don't expect anything more.
December 23, 2013
Mediocre at best. John Cusack is right at the top of my personal A list and his fans deserve better. He's not desperate for roles or money, so why take lame stuff like this? I don't get it. Still, it had its merits, although very few and far between. Extra half star just for being a Cusack film.
December 6, 2013
First off let me say that John Cusack playing a dead serious hitman is about as miscast as Ricky Gervais as an action star, I just couldn't buy it. With that being said, this movie really had nothing going for it, some vague plot about numbers read over a broadcast being responsible for worldwide assassinations, zzz... what a waste of a Friday evening.
August 31, 2013
"The Numbers Station" is an action movie with a bit of a dragging pace, typical of John Cusack-starred movies...but still mildly engaging in its shock value by showing no mercy towards those standing in the way of the Agency. Overall, it is a very light thriller.
July 14, 2013
The Numbers Station had a very interesting plot with tons of potential. The problem was, the movie was actually very boring, I hated John Cusack's take on his character, and the last 10% of the film was just stupid. Addressing each of those issues one-by-one, the bore factor was on the mediocre writing. The setting had the potential for an intense spy thriller but it was badly underutilized. As for Cusack, while I'm normally a fan of his, I didn't like the direction they went with his character. I think a Jason Bourne type of personality would've came across better on the screen. Instead Cusack almost seemed just empty. While I imagine that's what they were going for, it doesn't make for a very good protagonist. Lastly, the ending was just weak. Without getting into spoilers, it just felt unrealistic and almost rushed. For a movie that went nowhere for way too long, everything wrapped up a bit too quickly. Overall this film had some potential but was poorly executed.
Hamee
July 13, 2013
Cusack was a weird choice for this role, but somehow he made it work. This is a watchable, entertaining movie that will be forgotten very quickly.
May 19, 2013
You either hate it or love it...I didn't love it. Didn't actually hate it either. It is safe to say that it didn't hold my interest either. I'm pretty sure that I fell asleep on parts of it and awoke to see the end, because I don't remember them being attacked and the car outside getting blown up...Sad
Angelo Dean
July 10, 2014
1.5 Stars for Cusack and 1 Star for Akerman. Did not like the movie that much
March 28, 2014
Essentially a poor man's version of Grosse Pointe Blank!
May 30, 2013
A good concept for a story, but this film isn't that good. You, guys can skip this one.
Dave J
December 2, 2013
Monday, December 2, 2013

(2013) The Numbers Station
ACTION THRILLER

I remembered a quote from one of my all time favorite movies which was from "Casablanca" and it was a response from Major Heinrich Strasser in which he replied to the Ingrid Bergman character "that human life is cheap". And for the longest time, I was anticipating to see another current movie that can show this, and I was finally relieved that I finally saw another current movie where human life can be perceived as cheap and it happened to be this movie. "The Numbers Station" as the movie indicates is about people using numbers or codes which were used since World War II. In this case, it's run by an underground gov't agency which agents are given orders to execute specific people assuming that the people that're targeted deserved to be killed- this practice operates much harshly than the C.I.A. or the K.G.B. which a person can't just leave once you're in. For it can be compared to the mafia except that the agents have a license to kill without any consequences whatsoever. John Cusack happens to be one of those agents to perform this dangerous task which he could be killed in the process since it operates itself like a contract killing similar to what assassins or a hired hit man does. At the beginning, he successfully executes 3 people at a bar with one person escaping. The agency finds out where he's hiding out and they send Emerson Kent (John Cusack) to finish what he's started, but comes across an obstacle where there was a witness. And this witness gets killed too no matter what the circumstances are. Kent then becomes emotionally bothered by this for he hardly sleeps, since he's a human being too for one of the rules upon joining this agency is that you're not permitted to show any emotion. The agency acknowledges this so they send him to some isolated area in England with a new assignment where he's being ordered to look after a woman who's good at decoding numbers and is labelled as a "cryptologist" or 'code breaker' her name is Katherine played by Malin Akerman. And after she makes several attempts to bond with Emerson Kent is when things start to happen where other people had also discovered there secret locked facility, and have killed the previous "cryptologist" worker as well as her security guard agent. Viewers are then wondering how or if they ever are going to get out of this situation, since both characters of Elizabeth and Kent can't leave this agency and at the same time people are coming after them.

This movie has remnants of 2005 "The Matador" with Pierce Brosnan since the main protagonists can never chose to leave from an agency who seem to have taken a hold onto both of their lives, and "28 Days Later" because of the musical score as well as the direction.

A movie that is less than a hour and a half requires viewers to observe and actually "listen" to every single line that's been spoken, particularly between the characters of Cusack and Akerman since things that are missed may result in not liking the film altogether. In the instance of war in general soldiers fighting onto the field are all pawns of whatever decisions the gov't decides since some wars are not necessary and the analogy of this movie is like a different type of pawn.

Footnote: "Cryptologists" are still being used today as mentioned on a recent 60 minutes segment with something to do with the NSA leaks.

3.5 out of 4 stars
December 15, 2013
Pretty damn poor. Managed to buy a copy to watch, as I'm an avid amateur radio user, and it was pretty poorly put together and overall disappointing as they could have done so much more instead of the generic Hollywood style cinema that we see everywhere.
Dann M

Super Reviewer

December 3, 2013
A stereotypical espionage thriller, The Numbers Station is competent enough but isn't very engaging. When a US secret intelligence base is attacked a CIA agent and a cryptographer have to hold off a strike team and regain control of the dispatch system in order to stop a series of assassinations. John Cusack and Malin Akerman lead the cast and give solid performances. However, the writing is rather poor and employs some insane logic in regards to how the CIA works. While it's fairly entertaining and delivers some thrills, The Numbers Stations is formulaic and predictable.
November 1, 2013
While this Direct-to-DVD title suffers from some unfortunately stupid budgetary failings, overall I found it to be a fairly entertaining espionage flick. John Cusack and Malin Akerman work well together, though I could watch Cusack in nearly anything and come away happy.
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