The Hunter's Prayer
|The Hunter's Prayer|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Jonathan Mostow|
|Written by||John Brancato|
|Based on||For the Dogs|
by Kevin Wignall
|Music by||Federico Jusid|
|Cinematography||José David Montero|
|Edited by||Ken Blackwell|
|Distributed by||Saban Films|
The Hunter's Prayer is a 2017 action thriller film directed by Jonathan Mostow, based on the 2004 novel For the Dogs by Kevin Wignall. The film tells about a conflicted hitman helping a young woman to avenge the death of her family. The film stars Sam Worthington, Odeya Rush, Allen Leech, and Amy Landecker. Filming began on August 12, 2014 in Yorkshire, England.
The film had its theatrical release on June 9, 2017 in the United States by Saban Films.
Lucas (Sam Worthington), a former soldier, is in a club looking for Ella Hatto (Odeya Rush). She is attending boarding school in Switzerland. Ella sees Lucas watching her and thinks he has been hired by her father to protect her. Unknown to Ella, her father was preparing to tell the FBI about Richard Addison's (Allen Leech) illegal operations and also stole 25 million dollars from him. Her father and step-mother have been murdered by a hired killer. Addison's gunmen try to kill her at the nightclub, but Lucas kills one and helps her escape. He receives a text threatening to kill his family if he doesn't kill Ella. He takes her across the French border.
Lucas calls Addison and he threatens to kill his estranged wife and daughter. Lucas tells Ella that her father was killed. At the grocery store, they are attacked by Addison's gunmen and Lucas gets shot in the leg. The two get on a train, where they meet Dani (Verónica Echegui), another contract killer. After treating Lucas's wounds, Dani makes Ella leave Lucas. Ella gets off the train, but Metzger (Martin Compston), an assassin who killed Ella's father, tries to kill her. Lucas protects Ella and they head to England.
While Lucas recovers from drug addiction, Ella takes his gun and goes to Addison's office building, but she gets arrested by the police. Banks (Amy Landecker), an FBI agent working for Addison, takes Ella to Addison's house. At that time, Lucas is attacked by Dani and her colleague killer. He kills them and goes to Addison's house. In the basement shootout, Lucas kills Banks and Addison shoots Metzger. After getting shot in the shoulder, Ella shoots Addison to death.
Ella receives a phone call from Lucas. Ella tells Lucas that she is now living with her aunt and cousins. The two say farewell to each other. Lucas visits a house, where his wife and daughter are waiting to welcome him.
- Sam Worthington as Stephen Lucas
- Odeya Rush as Ella Hatto
- Allen Leech as Richard Addison
- Amy Landecker as Gina Banks
- Martin Compston as Metzger
- Verónica Echegui as Dani
- Gabrielle Mostow as Jillian (Lucas' daughter)
- Shayne Drummond as Teresa
On January 30, 2013, it was announced that Sam Worthington would star lead as a hitman who helps a young girl to avenge the murder of her parents and brother, the film For the Dogs, based on Kevin Wignall's novel of same name, scripted by Paul Leyden and Oren Moverman was re-writing the script at that time.[clarification needed] Phillip Noyce was set to direct the film, which Anthony Rhulen and Navid McIlhargey would produce through FilmEngine Entertainment, along with Worthington, John Schwarz and Michael Schwarz through their Full Clip Productions, with Leyden. On May 13, Hailee Steinfeld was added to the cast to play the young girl whose parents and brother are murdered. On November 8, the ensemble cast was announced which includes Martin Compston, Amy Landecker and Verónica Echegui. Sierra/Affinity announced that they had sold the film to twenty international buyers.
Filming began in early November 2014 in Yorkshire, England (Leeds, Harrogate, Helmsley, Scarborough and Saltaire). It would also be shot in Switzerland, Germany, Spain, U.S. (New York City) and Hungary.
The Hunter's Prayer received poor reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 37% based on 19 reviews, and an average rating of 5/10. On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating, the film has a score 35 out of 100, based on 5 critics, indicating "unfavorable reviews".
Derek Smith of Slant Magazine gave the film 2.5 stars out of 4, writing, "The Hunter's Prayer is steadfastly concise and efficient, foregrounding action above expositional groundwork." Joe Leydon of Variety wrote, "Director Jonathan Mostow (Terminator 3) provides enough hairbreadth escapes, extended shootouts, crash-and-dash auto chases, and hand-to-hand combat sequences to make the movie modestly diverting for undemanding audiences." Justin Lowe of The Hollywood Reporter said, "The action falters a bit when attention shifts to the rocky relationship between Lucas and Ella, but cinematographer Jose David Montero and editor Ken Blackwell succeed in getting things back on track with a consistent succession of energetic chase and fight scenes."
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- Fleming Jr, Mike (May 13, 2013). "Cannes: Hailee Steinfeld To Star Opposite Sam Worthington In 'For The Dogs'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved October 15, 2014.
- D'Alessandro, Anthony (November 8, 2014). "'Hunter's Prayer' Answered: Sam Worthington Film Sells To 20 Territories". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 10, 2014.
- Frater, Patrick (November 8, 2014). "AFM: Buyers Hear Mostow's 'Prayer' With Sam Worthington". Variety. Retrieved November 10, 2014.
- McNary, Dave (September 9, 2016). "Toronto: Sam Worthington Thriller 'Hunter's Prayer' Bought by Saban". Variety. Retrieved September 9, 2016.
- Crust, Kevin (April 21, 2017). "Every single movie coming out this summer". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 25, 2017.
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- Smith, Derek (June 3, 2017). "The Hunter's Prayer". Slant Magazine. Retrieved September 9, 2017.
- Leydon, Joe (June 9, 2017). "Film Review: 'The Hunter's Prayer'". Variety. Retrieved September 9, 2017.
- Lowe, Justin (June 9, 2017). "'The Hunter's Prayer': Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 9, 2017.