The Phoenix

Peppermint is a painfully average revenge flick

Peppermint is a new action thriller from the man behind Taken. Riley North (Jennifer Garner) is a mother whose husband and young daughter get gunned down in a cartel-related hit. After the law fails to bring justice to the perps, Riley will take the law into her own hands and get revenge.

The story of Peppermint is not strong. It is very reminiscent of almost every other revenge flick out there. The story beats are predictable from A to Z and the attempted plot twists can be seen from a mile away. The story is run of the mill and the whole film is incredibly average, but despite the horrendous story Peppermint manages to be somewhat engaging because of the enjoyable action and Jennifer Garner’s performance.

Garner does a really good job with the role. She easily embodies the warm motherly spirit needed for the first half of the movie, and her rapport with her onscreen family is discernible. However, after her family tragically dies, Garner perfectly transforms into the vengeful assassin the character becomes. The film never explains how Riley obtained her special set of skills, but Garner makes it work.

Peppermint takes very little time establishing the story and characters within the story but instead focuses on the action set pieces. Each is fun and enjoyable to watch. Director Pier Morel is a competent action director with a good grasp on how to create good action. The camerawork is clear but some of the fast editing makes some moments hard to follow. The villains in Peppermint provide another area of weakness. Every villain is unnamed cannon fodder. The film portrayal of the cartel is stereotypical, unmemorable, and uninteresting.

Peppermint is an average movie. Garner and the action setpieces are good, but the action is forgettable  The story is riddled with every cliche in the book, and each twist is as clear as day. Peppermint is not a film to rush out and see, but if its a rainy day and Peppermint is on TV, give it a watch.

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