Film: Fast Charlie
Cast: Pierce Brosnan, Morena Baccarin, Gbenga Akinnagbe, James Caan, Christopher Matthew Cook, David Chattam, Toby Huss, Fredric Lehne, Sharon Gless, Brennan Keel Cook
Director: Phillip Noyce
Rating: 2.5/5
Runtime: 90 min

This film scripted by Richard Wenk is adapted from the novel Gun Monkeys by Victor Gischler. The central character ‘Fast Charlie’ is a clean-up guy/ a fixer for a criminal organization based in Biloxi, Mississippi. Nothing new about that you may well say and it’s true too – other than the fact that Biloxi seems like too nice a place for a criminal gang of this sort. The narrative is an assemblage of very familiar and predictable plot points. 
The predictable plot has Charlie Swift (Pierce Brosnan), as the centrepiece – he works quickly and asks no questions other than those necessary. He gets involved in bad deals, gets caught up in a conspiracy involving a rival gang and, eventually has to put business aside to go on a vengeance-fueled killing spree. 
At the outset we see Charlie in a junkyard, being ordered to strip, and we hear his response “I always thought my life would end like this, in some godforsaken place, from a bullet I didn’t see coming. But I never thought I’d care.” As the narrative progresses we get to know why he would start to care. Charlie works for Stan (the late James Caan), a crime boss who has dementia. Beggar (Gbenga Akinnagbe), a gangster from New Orleans attacks Charlie’s crew and leaves most of them dead. Charlie survives and decides to seek vengeance.
Scriptwriter Wenk and director Phillip Noyce seem to want to make their titular character much better than a routine one. They work in some personal details like what makes this character tick and also throw in an unlikely relationship that forces Charlie to reconsider his life choices when the going gets tough. Charlie shoots first and asks questions later. His loyalty and devotion to Stan is unquestionable. He loves Italian food and culture and even dreams of a comfortable retired life in Italy. 
Charlie is tasked with finding Marcie (Morena Baccarin), after a hit goes wrong and the corpse becomes unidentifiable. Apparently, only the wife, Marcie, can tell them about any intimate identification marks that are not so obvious. 
It’s a weird set-up for a potential romance if you ask me, but the filmmakers had other ideas. Marcie’s specialty is taxidermy and Charlie, having fallen for her cool, calm and, no-nonsense demeanor, lands at her house with a dead raccoon he’d like stuffed. Strange ain’t it? But Brosnan and Baccarin make us believe that something more could come out of this strange relationship
Pierce Brosnan is fully committed to the role lending fullness to a character that may not have had much depth to it. The action is routine but fairly entertaining. A villain known only as “the Freak” (Christopher Matthew Cook), is the choicest of characters because he gives Charlie a tough runaround and makes his root beer fixation obvious. 

The cinematography fails to throw deep light on the goings-on here. Most of the supporting actors fade into the background without leaving much of a mark.
There’s also not much suspense or thrill to be had. The violent acts are just that – violent and routine for the hitman universe. There are throwaway action set-pieces, fast cuts and, hit man-action-genre-staples here. But what’s unique here though is that Brosnan steers masterfully, slighting away from type.