The best bad movie you'll see all week: Interceptor

Hmm, something called Interceptor on Netflix. Here we go again, another half-assed action movie for their roster. I’m sure I’ll have completely forgotten about by the time it’s over, if not sooner.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

“Elsa Pataky was Gal Godot before Godot came along.”

Is that how that play ends?

Gah, I feel like I missed an opportunity. Nicely done, @crispywebb!


P.S. I see now that I had accidentally spelled her name correctly a few times, so I got that going for me.

Guardian review had a similar take, though perhaps less emphasis on Pataky.

I’m going to struggle to fit this into my backlog, but it’s added to the list.

Fwiw, it’s only 92 minutes long.


I’ll add it to the watch list!

“bad CG in a movie like this and bad CG movie [sic?] in other movies”
“on [sic?] noes, is the missile going to blow up in time?”

I should have known I was just going to step on my own feet if I attempted an “oh noes”. Forced internet memes were never my forte. :) Thanks again, @Mercanis!


I got a kick out of this, the whole film was just Pataky flexing on old school action films and she rocked it. Action was solid - a couple of the deaths had me squeal with delight, gotta love the ninja warrior-esque finale, too. Just the right amount of stupid; like trying to bribe her with 30mil USD - I’m no economist but I’d wager nuking every major US city would somewhat affect the value of the dollar and probably make that a bad deal.

Glad you brought this up! I did enjoy that the point of the script seemed to be she never so much as considered any of the offers floated her way. Even as her father was being tortured and murdered*, it seemed like she was super bummed about it, but didn’t consider the exchange of her father’s life worth 300 million deaths. She knew the moral calculus, which is more than I can say for most movie heroes (and especially superheroes, who almost universally suck at moral calculus). So, yeah, the $30 million of soon-to-be-worthless money was kind of funny. I’m also glad the main bad guy didn’t magically turn into the most bad-ass fighter of all just so we could have a climactic punch up.

And speaking of Luke Bracey, it was funny hearing the bad guy attempting to use the word “paroxysm” after twice demonstrating that he’s incapable of pronouncing the word “nuclear”! Not all super smooth bad guys have the benefits of a classical education.


* sigh

Okay, I swear I’m not making this up. I read the posts about this and thought, “Eh, I could use a dumb action movie.” so I started it and read the blurb on the thumbnail. It made me harken back to Ice Station, a book by Matthew Reilly that was actually kinda fantastic at the moment, until his grotesque abuse of italics in the following books finally clicked and then they were completely unreadable.

A Matthew Reilly Film. Holy shit, I’m among the cognoscenti!

Edit: Also Holy shit, the first scene. It’s like early Steven Seagal movies where most of the actors are clearly people who were hanging out in the same bar when he got the nod.

Edit2: There’s a thing that might have a name already, that thing where cheap movies have sets that have a lot of blue light and flat effect, this has that in spades. Agents of SHIELD had a bunch of it.

One movie it’s Pataky with her lovely accent and cat-like eyes, the next it’s Gadot’s thousand-megawatt smile.

Afraid not; Gadot was in the series one movie earlier (4-6 vs. Pataky’s 5-8).

Anyway, great review despite this grave mistake on the Fast and Furious filmography. You really sold this as quality action schlock, and I’m always up for that. It’ll definitely be on the top of the stack the next time I’ve got Netflix.

Don’t the Russians have interceptors?

Thanks for the recommendation. I don’t usually go for bad action movies, but my wife does, so we gave it a watch last night and had a blast. (Though I gotta say, everything with the father was just… bad. But at least I got a laugh out of it!)

But like everyone’s saying, the action was great. I thought it was slightly unbelievable that there were so few guns and soldiers on, you know, a military base, but I accept that they had to set the scene for some old-fashioned ass-kicking. (The part where they traced the disappearance/failure of individual guns was a mixed blessing as it highlighted this but also “explained” it.)

I do have one question about a rather central plot point (I know, I know, it’s not what the movie’s about, but I can’t help myself): When they hit the self-destruct button (why do we even have that lever?!), why didn’t they just wait for the platform to sink and then launch the missiles? It seems like even if they had closed the valves, the platform was still sinking. And after they took out the sidekick they could have just waited, anyway.

Also, it’s a little unbelievable that the US has only two interceptor sites for, you know, thousands of Soviet ICBMs, but it’s also unbelievable that missile interceptors actually work, and honestly that’s entirely beside the point.

Re: the CG:

Your exception here with the suspense at the end actually stuck out like a sore thumb to me. They’d been building up the tension with timers nearly hitting zero and all that stuff, and then the bad CG at the climax was painful. I honestly think it would have been better to just show the lights blinking out on the computerized map (which they also did, IIRC).

Another thing I appreciated about this movie is that the sidekick survived long enough that I actually thought he might make it all the way through, only to have him cruelly yanked away. But maybe that’s on me for not watching enough bad action movies.

And finally, I appreciated the pan at the closing shot of the movie contrasts her hospital room with her defaced bunkroom from earlier. It’s the little things, yeah? (Though I thought they really missed an opportunity, when the bad guy was going through her sexual harassment history, to have him say “I believe you.”)

Oh, and didn’t he have some quote in Latin at some point? I couldn’t tell if that, combined with his mispronunciations, was supposed to be a wink-nod about how clearly idiotic his “burn it all down to start over” philosophy was (though I guess he was really about the money), or if it was just a terrible script, heh.

Oh, it’s the weakest point by far - cutting off a pinky then going straight for a headshot* ten seconds later? The only piece of leverage he has and he burns it within a minute of putting it onscreen - what kinda torture ‘specialist’ does that?! No wonder the army or whoever fired him!

* Sigh indeed - didn’t they see Kiss Kiss Bang Bang? sheesh.

I like to think we’ve all learned an important lesson today: Tom Chick was not paying close attention when he watched the Fast and Furious movies. :)


It’s really funny how movies like this, in settings that should be brimming with firearms, have to go to lengths to force fistfights. I remember a kind of fun low budget movie set in a military facility that was supposed to be imprisoning Lovecraftian Elder Gods. In order to force the characters to have fistfights and even swordfights, there was some guff about a magical field or something that invalidated all gunpowder. They were very adamant about that during the exposition!

Right? It really was a matter of the bad guy being rash and not thinking through the implications. And furthermore Elsa Pataky knowing the bad guy would be rash and not think through the implications! The whole “I’m going to let the bad guys take over the command center so I can re-take the command center myself” was a fun last-minute escalation of the stakes, but like so much of the rest of the movie, it was goofy and implausible. Luckily, Pataky’s character wasn’t cc’ed on that memo!

Ah, this is an excellent point. If they could have managed better switchology, imagine how much cooler it would have been if the action had been limited to what they know on the base and how they know it. And instead of CGI of missiles and whatnot, we had scenes like this:

That’s one of the cinema’s most iconic UFO scenes, as compelling as Spielberg’s T-Rex attack, yet there’s not a single visual effect in it.

There was definitely a word or phrase before “paroxysm” that caught my ear, that sounded like he had no idea what it meant and was sounding it out phonetically. And I don’t mean to be hard on Bracey, because I liked him a lot and thought he was just enough Hans Gruber for Pataky’s character. But how do you repeatedly say “NOOK-yuh-lerr” without someone in the room correcting you?


Yeah, that’s what my wife said, that it’s because the bad guy was overconfident and she knew how he’d act. The movie didn’t sell that, to me, but she knows the rules of bad action movies better than I do.

What comes to my mind in this situation is the ice monster in Empire Strikes Back, and how much better it was in the original when you barely got to see the monster, compared to the special edition where they put the whole thing in. But damn, that scene is so much better. The constant patter in the control tower with them talking over each other, and then the long pause between “Do you want to report a UFO? … … No.” So good. And how you know exactly what’s going on even though the display is hard to read and they’re just talking in air traffic control-speak (or, at least, Hollywood air traffic control-speak, I don’t know what actual ATC sounds like).

I’m also reminded of the sentry gun scene in Aliens. With the right approach, “tell” can be soooo much better than “show”.


Ctrl+F’d ‘Hell’ and got zero results… sorry, guys, don’t have time to read everything.

If you want to see more Elsa ‘My god that body.’ Pataky watch Give 'em Hell Malone.