Trigger Warning Movie Review: Enjoyable action in this revenge film

Trigger Warning Movie Review: Enjoyable action in this revenge film

There is a lot to like in this action thriller, even though it occasionally suffers from some convenient writing and perhaps has a protagonist who’s almost invincible
Trigger Warning(3 / 5)

Boom. Crack. Crunch. That’s the nature of Trigger Warning, starring an in-form Jessica Alba as an active-duty Special Forces commando, Parker, who comes to her hometown after her father’s demise. Alba performs throat-slashing, bone-crunching stunts in some supremely well-executed action sequences. In one scene, after saving her male friend, Spider (Tone Bell), she quips, “Sup! Damsel in distress.” There is a lot to like in this action thriller, even though it occasionally suffers from some convenient writing and perhaps has a protagonist who’s almost invincible.

Director: Mouly Surya

Cast: Jessica Alba, Anthony Michael Hall, Mark Webber, Jake Weary, Gabriel Basso

Streamer: Netflix

We first see Alba's character, Parker, as she is in mid-combat, trying to take down terrorists. Parker, who has an espionage background, suspects that there might be foul play around her father's death. The truth about it unravels around all the mayhem. The violence is not all about the gun. In an impactful stunt scene, after her rifle is knocked down, she coolly grabs a knife and stabs him in the heart. Soon enough, we understand where she got the knife from, and why there’s some poetic justice being dispensed as she wields it to threaten intruders, slash tyres, and more. For the first half hour, the film maintains an aura of suspense about the protagonist’s personality and motives, but once the cat gets out of the bag, the rest of the film, even if with enterprising stunt scenes, turns into a routine revenge thriller.

Once perpetrators get identified around the halfway mark, it’s just a matter of scores being settled. It’s here that the convenient writing proves to be a bit of a dampener. We learn early on that Spider is good at cyber-hacking, but later, how this skill comes in handy isn’t exactly a great moment. A bigger issue perhaps is how Parker is invincible. Even when unarmed and handcuffed, no enemy can truly dominate her. This means that when she does slide out of tough spots, it’s not exactly a surprise.

All said, Trigger Warning does have quite a bit going for it. The writing, for instance, ensures that Parker isn’t just fighting a personal battle. Her resistance is also for the greater good of the country, resonating with her values as a soldier. So, even if it’s a film with flaws, Jessica Alba's stunt dynamism is eye-catching. If you are considering checking this film out, just remember that it’s about a protagonist that shoots first and asks questions later. 

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