Bloodshot (film)

From Seeds of the Word
Bloodshot
Bloodshot - official film poster.jpeg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDavid S. F. Wilson
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story byJeff Wadlow
Based on
Starring
Music bySteve Jablonsky
CinematographyJacques Jouffret
Edited byJim May
Production
company
Distributed bySony Pictures Releasing
Release date
  • March 13, 2020 (2020-03-13)
Running time
109 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$45 million[1]
Box office$37.3 million[2]

Bloodshot is a 2020 American superhero film based on the Valiant Comics character of the same name. It is intended to be the first installment in a series of films set within a Valiant Comics shared cinematic universe.[3] Directed by David S. F. Wilson (in his feature directorial debut) from a screenplay by Jeff Wadlow and Eric Heisserer and a story by Wadlow,[4] the film stars Vin Diesel, Eiza González, Sam Heughan, Toby Kebbell, and Guy Pearce. It follows a soldier who was killed in action, only to be brought back to life with superpowers by an organization that wants to use him as a weapon.

Plot

After leading a successful rescue operation of hostages in Mombasa, U.S. soldier, Ray Garrison, and his wife, Gina, travel for a holiday at an Italian beachside town in the Amalfi Coast. They are kidnapped by a group of mercenaries led by Martin Axe, who demands to know how the US military learned about the hostages and their location. When Ray explains that he cannot answer, as he isn't privy to that sort information, Axe executes Gina in front of him. Ray vows revenge, and Axe kills Ray as well.

An amnesiac Ray awakens in the labs of Rising Spirit Technologies (RST), a company in Kuala Lumpur specializing in cybernetic enhancements for disabled US military personnel. CEO and lead scientist, Dr. Emil Harting, tells Ray he is the first successful human subject of the "Bloodshot" program, resurrecting and healing him through the injection of experimental nanite technology now replacing his entire bloodstream. This technology increases his strength and heals his injuries, but the nanites need to be regularly replaced and recharged or he will eventually succumb to damage and die again. When the nanites work at extreme power, they create a red glowing circle of light on Ray's chest.

Ray is introduced to Dr. Harting's other patients, including former US Navy diver "KT" (with whom Ray strikes up a friendship), former U.S. Army Ranger Marcus Tibbs, and ex-Navy SEAL Jimmy Dalton (who overtly—maybe even jealously—dislikes Garrison). After experiencing flashbacks of Gina and Axe, he leaves to avenge Gina's death. Using the nanites and RST servers to hack into databases, Ray tracks down Axe to Budapest and kills him along with his bodyguards. Back at RST, Ray is put to sleep as his nanites are rebooted. As he has done many times before, Harting then replaces Ray's memories with a new scenario of how Gina died, this time with Axe's associate, Nick Baris, as the culprit. KT objects to Harting repeatedly manipulating Ray's memories so he will go after different targets without question or remorse, but she is ignored and reminded that RST can kill her by deactivating her enhancements.

Ray awakens, once again amnesiac, and is re-introduced to RST, then experiences flashbacks of Baris kidnapping and killing him and Gina. Driven by revenge, he tracks Baris to East Sussex and kills him, despite the man pleading that RST is lying. Wilfred Wigans, a programmer forced to work for Baris, activates an EMP bomb that incapacitates Ray and severs his link with RST. Ray awakens in Wigans's office and experiences multiple contradicting memories of who killed Gina. Wigans helps him realize RST has been manipulating him so he would kill the company's enemies and rivals. Ray tracks down Gina, not only learning she is actually still alive but that their relationship ended five years ago, and since then, she has started a new family in London.

Harting sends KT after Wigans, but after KT asks Wigans for help in freeing herself from RST control and taking down the corporation, she returns to RST and tells Harting she failed to capture the programmer. Meanwhile, Ray is recaptured by Dalton and Tibbs and brought back to the laboratory. KT and Wigans sabotage the reprogramming process and destroy the RST computers. Ray awakens and Dalton and Tibbs try to subdue him. After a lengthy battle, he kills them as the RST building crumbles. Harting confronts Ray with a grenade launcher, confident that the soldier will surrender now that his nanites have been exhausted. To his surprise, Ray is willing to die to achieve victory and activates a grenade that the nanites deconstructed, fatally wounding them both. Ray later awakes with his full memories, revived by Wigans who has updated his technology so his nanites are self-sufficient. The two men and KT then leave in search of a new life.

Underlying themes

Free will

In an interview with Den of Geek, director David S.F. Wilson mentioned free will as being one of the main underlying themes of the movie:

Transhumanism, which is basically the boundary between who we are biologically and technology, is just evaporating. What happens to us? What happens to us when the technological advances exceed our biological ones? When you can buy a stronger arm or a chip in your head that makes you more intelligent, what happens when those things require insane amounts of effort and dedication to become faster or stronger? Or the biological birthright of being intelligent, what happens when you just pay for that? What does that do to us as a species in terms of a class system? That was just very loosely explored, but the concept of free will and being able to choose who we are is very much front and center in the film. I feel like as we allow technology into our lives more and more, we are increasingly susceptible to that and I think it’s important to maintain a sense of agency in our lives and not just, for whatever reason, believe what screens tell us. I think we’re seeing that even in the political climate, so how do we maintain sort of a factual awareness in the face of all that happening? I don’t want to make a TED Talk, but I felt like this was a nice way to personify that dilemma.

On the theme of free will, the Catechism of the Catholic Church states:

1730 God created man a rational being, conferring on him the dignity of a person who can initiate and control his own actions. "God willed that man should be 'left in the hand of his own counsel,' so that he might of his own accord seek his Creator and freely attain his full and blessed perfection by cleaving to him." (GS 17; Sir 15:14)

Man is rational and therefore like God; he is created with free will and is master over his acts. - Saint Irenaeus, Adv. haeres. 4,4,3:PG 7/1,983

1731 Freedom is the power, rooted in reason and will, to act or not to act, to do this or that, and so to perform deliberate actions on one's own responsibility. By free will one shapes one's own life. Human freedom is a force for growth and maturity in truth and goodness; it attains its perfection when directed toward God, our beatitude.

— Catechism of the Catholic Church, Part III, Section I, Chapter I, Article 3 (nn. 1730-1731)

Resurrection

One of the themes a film like “Bloodshot” deals with is the theme of resurrection, though not in any kind of supernatural sense. The resurrection dealt with, rather than a gift of new life, is an awakening into slavery. Ray's life is in the hands of Dr. Emil Harting, who not only controls Ray but also wishes to use Ray in order to have control over the life and death of those who could jeopardize his supremacy over these technological advances. A few vague references in the film to the Resurrection of Jesus are not really justifiable in light of these considerations, though the review by Alexander Manson on Christian Answers might make it seem that it were.

  1. "Bloodshot (2020)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved April 4, 2020.
  2. "Bloodshot (2020)". The Numbers. Retrieved August 19, 2020.
  3. Clark, Travis (September 18, 2019). "How Valiant Entertainment is jumping from comics to movies and TV". Business Insider.
  4. "Bloodshot". WGA Directory.