Norman's Review of Haywire
A last minute mission in Dublin turns deadly for stunning secret operative Mallory Kane when she realizes she's been betrayed and that her own life is no longer safe. Now to outwit her enemies, she'll simply have to outlast them. Haywire follows freelance covert ops agent Mallory Kane. Kane is hired by her handlers to perform various assignments that are unauthorized by the U.S. government. The story centers around a hostage rescue mission in Barcelona that goes according to plan. Reluctantly, Mallory accepts another job, just weeks after the Barcelona mission, that ships her to Dublin. This effortless mission quickly goes awry, leading Mallory to discover that the she has been double crossed by the very people she works for. Mallory is thrust into a personal vendetta to bring justice to those who betrayed her.
Carano succeeds by being allowed to focus her time and energy into moving fluidly through her environment and fighting her way out of it. Also while she's not called upon to move through any great emotional range the script moves her through some predictable action movie beats, including a half hearted attempt at a broken heart she hits her internal marks with more believability than you might expect from a pro fighter. She's surrounded by an impressive crew of men who do their best to halt or kill her. Carano's the real star of the cast of course and she brings the perfect tone of predatory nuance to the role. She's not just good for an athlete she's a good performer.
The bulk of the film revolves around Mallory's attempt to figure out just who double crossed her and why. You know soon enough that the end is coming, but the film seems unsure of what to do about it. Basically any given moment looks good and feels fine and the surrounding five minutes would probably make you feel like you were watching a good film. Haywire is okay at best. You can't really hate it, but then you can't do much else with it either.