Sunday 10 September 2023

REVIEW: King of Killers (2023) - Starring Alain Moussi, Kevin Grevioux, and Stephen Dorff

Review by Jon Donnis
"King of Killers" delivers a visceral punch of adrenaline, bringing together the talents of Alain Moussi, Kevin Grevioux, and Stephen Dorff in a bloody spectacle that action aficionados will relish. This thriller, adapted from Darkstorm Comics, marks Grevioux's directorial debut, and it's clear he knows how to create intense, action-packed sequences.

At the heart of the story is Marcus Garan, brilliantly portrayed by Alain Moussi. As a hitman for the enigmatic Xane, played by the ever-suave Stephen Dorff, Marcus is known for his ruthless efficiency. However, what sets this film apart is Marcus's dual life, juxtaposing his deadly profession with his loving family. This unique aspect adds depth to his character and gives viewers someone to root for beyond the typical anti-hero.

The plot takes a heart-wrenching turn when Marcus's wife, Karla, played by Amy Groening, becomes a victim of a job gone wrong. This tragedy forces Marcus to step away from contract killing, and it's here that the film introduces a familiar but effective trope, a desperate father pushed back into the game to save his ailing daughter who suddenly has a heart condition. While this narrative device might seem cliché, it serves as the catalyst for the pulse-pounding action that follows.

The movie truly comes alive in Tokyo, where Marcus faces off against Jorg Drakos, portrayed menacingly by Frank Grillo. The King of Killers himself has concocted a deadly game that pits Marcus and six other elite assassins against each other in a high-rise filled with traps. The premise is intriguing, and it sets the stage for intense, heart-pounding showdowns.

"King of Killers" doesn't hold back on the violence, offering a relentless display of headshots, throat slashes, and bone-crunching action. Fans of hardcore action will revel in the brutal choreography and intense combat scenes that keep you on the edge of your seat.

However, the film isn't without its flaws. Some aspects of the storyline, such as Marcus's double life, come across as unintentionally silly and may strain credulity at times. While these moments might break the immersion for some viewers, the film's relatively short 90-minute runtime helps maintain its pacing.

In the end, "King of Killers" is a super-violent and brutal action thriller that doesn't apologize for its ferocity. It offers a rollercoaster ride of action and suspense, even if it occasionally veers into the realm of the absurd. For fans of relentless, over-the-top action, this film is an easy watch. I score "King of Killers" a solid 7 out of 10. It may not reinvent the genre, but it delivers what it promises, a wild, adrenaline-fueled ride through the world of contract killers and deadly games.

Out now on Digital at