THE PROTÉGÉ (2021) Reviews and with 7 clips!

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The Protégé is a 2021 American action thriller about two of the world’s premier assassins who share a mysterious past from Vietnam.

Directed Martin Campbell (Green Lantern; Edge of Darkness; Casino Royale, GoldenEye) from a screenplay written by Richard Wenk (The Expendables 2; The Equalizer and sequel, Jack Reacher: Never Go Back; The Mechanic; Vamp).


Rescued as a child by legendary assassin Moody (Samuel L. Jackson) and trained in the family business, Anna (Maggie Q) is the world’s most skilled contract killer. But when Moody – the man who was like a father to her and taught her everything she needs to know about trust and survival – is brutally killed, Anna vows revenge.

Image via Lionsgate

As she becomes entangled with an enigmatic killer (Michael Keaton) whose attraction to her goes way beyond cat and mouse, their confrontation turns deadly and the loose ends of a life spent killing will weave themselves even tighter…

Maggie Q in The Protégé. Photo: Jichici Raul

The movie stars Maggie Q (Death of Me; Slumber), Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Keaton, Robert Patrick, Patrick Malahide and Lili Rich.


“The action is intense and will get your adrenaline pumping […] The cast is strong with Maggie Q adding to her already impressive action resume, Samuel L. Jackson adding to his already impressive action legacy and then there’s Michael Keaton. Has Michael Keaton ever performed poorly in anything?” Bulletproof Action

” …it scratches the itch that you want from a B-movie actioner. Talented actors like Keaton, Q, and Jackson use their talents to elevate the material, give it a bit more gravitas, and it’s still a fun time. While its more sober machinations at the conclusion don’t really work, they’re not enough to derail the mostly successful thrills that The Protégé knows how to dole out.” Collider

“We get plenty of violence, although honestly much of it feels like a distraction or a commercial obligation alongside the more character-specific scenes which seem where Campbell and writer Richard Wenk’s interests lie. The action we get is, per usual, polished, accomplished, shot and edited for maximum clarity and fully aware of the grim consequences, but it’s also nothing to write home about.” Forbes

” …much of the third-act suspense fails to captivate. It’s just the usual infiltrate-the-gala business, where the gala in question is being held on a private island guarded by everything but sharks with lasers mounted on their fins. You won’t be surprised to hear it takes about three seconds for Anna to get in. You probably won’t be surprised by anything else, either.” The Hollywood Reporter

“The fight scenes in The Protégé are infrequent and unspectacular, but there’s a bruising physicality to all of the film’s stunts — always refreshing in the age of CG action — and Maggie Q continues to prove that Hollywood messed up by not making her a superstar. She ekes real charm out of rank dialogue, underwrites even the shakiest beats with stoic heroism, and throws herself into every stunt…” IndieWire

The Protégé has little to distinguish it except a director, Martin Campbell, with competent action chops and a penchant for pairing violence with make-out music. Kudos to Q, though, for a performance anchored in classy disdain for the baloney around her.” The New York Times

“This movie is action-packed from beginning to end with quick humor and intelligent writing.  A lot of work went into the hand-to-hand combat actions to make them as realistic as possible.  Also, fans get the sexiest fight scene since Mr & Mrs Smith.  […] This riveting tale of murder, money, and mayhem will leave you wanting a part two…” That Darn Girl Movie

Release date:

In the US, Lionsgate will release The Protégé theatrically on August 20th 2021.

Cast and characters:

Maggie Q … Anna
Samuel L. Jackson … Moody
Michael Keaton … Rembrandt
Robert Patrick … Billy Boy
Patrick Malahide … Vohl
Lili Rich … Doll’s Friend
Ekaterina Baker … Technician Lotta
Madalina Anea … Jane
Ori Pfeffer … Joe Athens
Jack Derges … Randy
Florin Piersic Jr. … Ram
George Pistereanu … Vali
Gamba Cole … Benny
Velizar Binev … Don Preda
Caroline Loncq … Claudia

Filming locations:

Bucharest, Romania
Sofia, Bulgaria
Treehouse Digital, 635-637 Christchurch Rd, Boscombe, Bournemouth, England, United Kingdom (LED Screen Pick up shots)

Production companies:

Arthur Sarkissian Productions
Campbell Grobman Films
Millennium Media
Seven Stars Entertainment
Signature Pictures


Originally titled The Asset, the film was supposed to begin production in January 2020, but filming was interrupted by the global health situation, forcing the production into hiatus until late 2020. Filming wrapped in September 2020 and there were plans were to release the film in April 2021.


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