American Ultra is about a stoner, Mike (Jesse Eisenberg), whose only concern in life is when to propose to his girlfriend, Phoebe (Kristen Stewart). Then one day he discovers that he may be of pretty significant importance to the CIA, as they attempt to assassinate him. But then his previously unrealized skills kick in and the government gets more than they bargained for as Mike is singlehandedly dismantling their entire strategy.
The acting is decent for the most part. While the director gets the right amount of laughs out of the jokes, he could have inspired some of his actors a little more. Eisenberg is just fine, but at times Stewart seems as if she’s just going through the motions–regardless of the exuding chemistry between her and Eisenberg.
American Ultra keeps us guessing and you’re never sure what’s really going on–which isn’t a bad thing. It’s actually exciting. It doesn’t waste too much time with background stories or the world outside of the 3-day-period shown in the film, but in the end, it doesn’t really matter. The dialogue is really well thought out and realistic. The fusion of the black comedy and action genres is fun. Any time someone gets a product that they believe is too different they automatically degrade it. But with American Ultra, it’s refreshing.
This movie works on so many levels, with a tone that is very unique–especially compared to most films we get nowadays. And clocking in at a mere 96 minutes, it’s the perfect change up from the typical 2 and a half hour vanity projects that seem to keep projecting on our screens as of late.