Imagine someone who’s sense of hearing was so sensitive, if honed-in properly, it could track sounds of danger in far off distance better than any normal human ear. This is exactly the case in the new Action film The Painter.
In select theaters on January 5, 2024, and released digitally on January 9th through Republic Pictures (A Paramount Company), The Painter is directed by Kimani Ray Smith, who has been involved in film for years; first as an actor, then in production/directing with credits that include episodes for 2021’s Two Sentence Horror Stories. For this new film Smith takes his keen talent for creating suspense and mixes it up with a story by Brian Buccellato which meshes Action, Drama, Suspense, and even Sci-Fi into one tight little package.
With this, they have the good fortune of a strong cast to work with that includes Charlie Weber (Buffy the Vampire Slayer series, How to Get Away with Murder series), Academy Award Winner Jon Voight (Midnight Cowboy 1969, Deliverance 1972), and Madison Bailey (Black Lightning series, Outer Banks series). Gelling it all together, quickly summarizing, the film follows Peter aka The Painter, a CIA operative who has a super human sense of hearing, that combined with his instincts, makes him merely unstoppable. Unfortunately, Peter has a tragic strike, and he leaves the CIA, going into obscurity. Peter’s adopted father, Byrne, is also long since retired from the CIA and estranged from Peter. Then, seventeen long years later their paths cross once more… but the terms are neither what either one bargained for.
Overall, the story of The Painter is compelling enough to attract Action fans, but also those who like a good Mystery too. The plot sprinkles in many ideas that center around futuristic ideas, governmental corruption, and broken family ties. These factors in mind, what really ties it all together is the subtle textured backstory and centralized main characters portrayed by Weber and Voight. Playing off one another quite nicely, Voight plays a smart, charismatic elder statesman nicely while Weber erupts as a lethal force after lying dormant for so long.
Of course, there is much more at play here; and this includes creating a superhuman army, mind control, among other things. However, it would be silly to go into every last detail and spoil The Painter if you plan on sitting down to watch it. That is why it is best left for you to go into the film just to have a foundation of what to expect and not the whole thing. Furthermore, beyond Weber and Voight, Madison Bailey does a fine job portraying the young, conflicted Sophia, while The Painter would-be nemesis, Ghost, is played rather awkwardly, but effective by Max Montesi (The 100 series, The Devil in Ohio series).
All matters considered, if you are a fan of Action films with some substance to them, The Painter is certainly a worthwhile selection. That is why Cryptic Rock gives it 4 out of 5 stars.