Thursday Night Movie Club
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Release Date: January 14, 2005

Director: Rob Bowman
Jennifer Garner
Goran Visnjic
Kirsten Prout
Will Yun Lee
Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa
Terence Stamp
Natassia Malthe
Bob Sapp
Chris Ackerman
Edson T. Ribeiro
Colin Cunningham
Hiro Kanagawa
Mark Houghton
Laura Ward
Kurt Max Runte
Mark Miller
Abby Miller
Young Elektra
Nikolas Natchios
Elektra poster
Jennifer Garner in Elektra.See the movie quickly! Elektra won't be staying in theaters very long. Not even Jennifer Garner's wonderful physique can save this movie.

Elektra is a spin off from Daredevil starring Ben Affleck and Garner. The Elektra character dies in the movie but hints at the end imply that she is still alive. Miraculously for her, Elektra Noccios was visited by Stick, a blind, mystic teacher who has the power to bring people back from the dead. Stick further trains the confused Elektra, further honing her deadly skills. But rage and vengeance has taken its toll on Elektra. She masters the physical skills but not the mental aspects.

Elektra has become the world's most formidable assassin. With the help of her business manager, McCabe, Elektra commands top dollar for her hits.

Unfortunately, the only interesting sequence is the opening. Elektra is sent to kill a gangster. She has been dispatched several times to kill this man, but he keeps escaping. His body guards are killed but he, amazingly, survives. He has come to the conclusion that Elektra is playing with him, making him suffer for his sins. The man calmly explains Elektra's background, as he knows it, to his current Commander. He doesn't believe a word until his men begin to disappear. It's a nice bit of storytelling to introduce the audience to Elektra since her character has changed so much since we first met her.

Jennifer Garner in Elektra.Elektra is worn out after her last contract. But for a fee of $2 million, Elektra accepts another target. But this hit has a price of its own. Elektra is sent to an empty house on a remote island and told to wait until the information on the hit is sent. Young, mischievous Abby Miller breaks into Elektra's house and steals Elektra's necklace that was featured in Daredevil.

Abby is caught. Elektra begins to realize there is something different about this girl. No one has ever snuck passed Elektra's guard so easily. Elektra lets her guard down, slightly, and becomes friendly to the girl and her single father. They have moved to this remote place because Abby doesn't fit in with other kids and is constantly getting into trouble. She is very intelligent but just can't help control her mischievous streak.

Elektra begins to see a little of herself in the young girl.

I will ruin the surprise because it's not much of a surprise. Guess who turns out to be Elektra's target? Surprise! Like I said, its not much of a surprise and at this point, the movie spirals down into a substandard action flick.

Elektra can't find the nerve to take out her targets and decides to protect them. She is not the only ones interested in the young girl. A mysterious group calling itself The Hand also has its sights on young Abby. Abby is destined to become a great warrior and the powers of good against evil are set in motion, with Elektra right in the middle. Sounds suspenseful, right?

Jennifer Garner in Elektra.The Hand sends a group of colorfully named assassins to kill Elektra and capture Abby. The fight scenes are rather lame. Stone is taken out by a large tree that Elektra seemingly steers as it falls to land squarely on top of him. Elektra throws one of her infamous swords through several rows of hedges to dispatch Typhoid. It appears that even the handle of the sword is sharp enough to cut through the hedges. Tattoo is killed because Elektra recognized his skills are illusions. "I've seen that before," Elektra calmly remarks. Oh boy! Such witty dialog.

Even the final confrontation with Kirigi is boring. The fight is shot with fast cuts and close ups to make the scene hard to follow. Gone are the days of well choreographed sword fights. They just don't make them like they did between Errol Flynn and Basil Rathbone in The Adventures of Robin Hood. Kirigi is stabbed, seemingly from out of nowhere. It happens so suddenly that it comes as a complete surprise.

I find it amazing that script writers cannot do a better job with the basic story. Comic book characters can be given so much more leeway in their characterizations because these people are not normal. Flawed characters, like Elektra and Spider-man, are the best because they are not perfect like Superman. Elektra merely goes through the motions, only attempting to show how complex she is but never achieving the appropriate balance. Elektra becomes a good person overnight, with no regrets for her past life as an assassin.

There won't be any sequels here as there is no place to take the character. I guess she will become a protector of good and righteousness, but even then, she would still need a bit of the darkness to be a tough warrior.