The International (2009)

Genre(s): Thriller
Sony || R - 118 minutes - $28.96 || June 9, 2009
Reviewer: Tyler Thomas || Posted On: 2009-06-15

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.:: F I L M ::.
The Film

.: F E A T U R E S :.

Special Features

.:: V I D E O ::.

.:: A U D I O ::.

.:: O V E R A L L ::.
Director: Tom Tykwer
Writer(s): Eric Singer (written by)
Cast: Clive Owen, Naomi Watts, Armin Mueller-Stahl

Theatrical Release Date: February 13, 2009

Supplemental Material:
  • Feature Commentary
  • 4 Featurettes
  • Extended Scene

Technical Information:
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Widescreen (2.40)
  • English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Surround 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish

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.::THE FILM::.

Alright, letís be honest. There are some actors who are great no matter what role they are in. For example, Denzel Washington. Name a bad movie heís in. Go ahead, Iíll wait right here. You canít can you? Alright, how about Clive Owen? No? You canít either? Oh, yes you can. Itís called The International. It stars Owen alongside Naomi Watts and some other cast mates that donít really fit in with the confusing plot, a belittled script, and just stupid plot twists that didnít keep me interested. Instead, they almost forced me to eject this one out of my disc player after about thirty minutes of the two-hour running time.

Synopsis: Interpol agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is determined to expose an arms dealing ring responsible for facilitating acts of terrorism around the globe. But as his investigation leads Salinger and his partner, Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts), deeper into the secret world of greed, corruption and murder, they become targets of a deadly conspiracy so vast; they soon find the only people left to trustÖ are each other. This pulse-pounding thriller plays a high-stakes game of suspense, intrigue and explosive action.

Thatís what is included on the back of the DVD case. Itís a lie. This is not a ďThrillerĒ by any sense of the word. This movie runs for roughly two hours and thereís maybe five minutes of ďthrillsĒ in it. Clive Owensí character is so boring that Iím surprised this movie hasnít destroyed his career. His acting in this one is so horrible I didnít want to believe that it was indeed him, I was hoping it was a stunt double the entire time.

Not only the bad acting from the cast, but the story line for this movie so ridiculous even Seagalís latest film has a better story line than this monstrosity. First the banks are killing people for exposing secrets, then the banks kill their own people for exposing secrets, then the attorneys get involved but canít do anything because they get told from higher ups to not pursue the case. But they pursue it anyway, tons more people die, not anyone that really matters since multiple people get shot, wounded, killed, etc, as the movie progresses but no one cares.

This is supposed to be one of those ďcat and mouseĒ movies where you see if the good guy can catch the bad guy, but it doesnít feel like it at all. The ending is so freaking stupid I laughed. The final battle scene is so unbelievable, ridiculous, and any other word in a thesaurus that means similar terms. I wonít spoil it, as much as I want to, but it deals with a final battle with Owen and the main bad guy from the bank/arms dealing/whatever scam is going on that takes place on a freaking roof. Yes, a roof in the middle of nowhere with no witnesses and guns.

This movie was trouble from the start. Bad acting, terrible and boring script and lines, and the fact the actors literally act like papier-m‚chť dolls makes it so much easier to say that this may be the movie to literally break the camelís back. It almost did for me, sorry Owen, but this is just a downright awful flick.


Commentary by Tom Tykwer and Eric Singer: Almost as boring as the movie, the director and writer, respectively, talk about various things such as the film, the cast, and other boring topics that are so much worse since they have monotone voices. I nearly fell asleep listening to this one after half-an-hour, so Iíd recommend passing.

Extended Scene (11 minutes): An extended scene from the film that is just as boring as it was in the film as it is in its extended version. Pass.

Making the International (30 minutes): The crew talks about the shooting of the movie, how they shot some of the scenes in particular, and other things that involve a ďmaking ofĒ featurette. It runs way too long, and most of the information isnít that entertaining.

Shooting at the Guggenheim (7 minutes): The shooting at the ďGuggenheimĒ is shown, how it was constructed, and a few other points are discussed. Iím sure someone out there will find this enjoying, to the rest of the world, Iíd recommend passing.

Architecture of the International (6 minutes): This is basically a dissection of the movie and its plot. I didnít understand the movie much as I saw it, and this just confused me more.

The Autostadt (5 minutes): I believe this is a look at the cars used in the movie, and about the locations as well, but itís also (like the other features) boring.


Sony is usually pretty reliable for their video quality on DVDís, and this one is no exception. Colors are bright and vibrant, and give great detail to the film itself. Color levels are also used properly and flesh tones appear how they should look. The problem lies within the black and contrast levels, as several of the scenes are too dark when they should be a smidge brighter. Thereís also a little bit of noise and distortion I found in a few of the scenes (mainly nighttime ones) that caused a few issues.

Audio-wise, this flick fares much worse than the above video. As a heavily dialogue-driven film, the action and surround use just isnít available. Even the scenes where the action should sound great like a few chase scenes, the audio sounds dull and muffled to an extent. Also the dialogue levels are fairly inconsistent throughout, as I had trouble hearing some of the actorís lines in some of the scenes. Surround usage was also minimal at best. I donít think I can recall a time when they were used, although Iím sure they were at some point.


Iím a huge Clive Owen fan, but this film is just awful. The plot is stupid, the runtime is too long, and the characters are boring and contrived. The technical package is decent, but the special features package is only for the fans, big big fans, of the film and no one else. Thereís probably some joke I could make about ďdonít go international,Ē ďdonít fly international,Ē etc. They all end with the same punch line though: donít bother.