May 112021

The Virtuoso is one of those movies that features a main character that one wonders how he became “The Virtuoso” because he makes some dumb mistakes, one wonders how he was such a well oiled assassin.



The Virtuoso

Genre(s): Suspense Thriller, Drama
Lionsgate| R – 110 min. – $21.99 | May 4, 2021

Date Published: 05/11/2021 | Author: The Movieman

Director: Nick Stagliano
Writer(s): James Wolf and Nick Stagliano (written by)
Cast: Anson Mount, Abbie Cornish, Anthony Hopkins, David Morse, Eddie Marsan, Richard Brake

Features: Commentary
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 2.39
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 34.94 GB
Total Bitrate: 41.84 Mbps
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A

Lionsgate provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

THE MOVIE — 2½/5

Plot Synopsis: Danger, deception, and murder descends upon a sleepy country town when a professional assassin (ANSON MOUNT) accepts a new assignment from his enigmatic mentor and boss (ANTHONY HOPKINS). Given only where and when along with a cryptic clue, the methodical hit man must identify his mysterious mark from among several possible targets, including a local sheriff (DAVID MORSE). Meanwhile, a chance encounter with an alluring woman (ABBIE CORNISH) at the town’s rustic diner threatens to derail his mission.

Review: When it comes to suspense thrillers, especially ones with a mystery angle, I can be lenient and go with the flow. But I do have my limits and those were met with The Virtuoso, a direct-to-video flick that features a fine cast, including Anthony Hopkins who just received an Academy Award for his role in The Father. The film itself is just plain dumb. Well, the main character is an idiot, have to question how he became some sort of world-class assassin, a Virtuoso if you will.

And performances wise, everyone was fine, sure Hopkins was kind of phoning it in and this was a quick payday, but his gravitas is still on display. Anson Mount has a few okay moments but his monotone narration, if you’re not careful, could lull you into sleep, and with a slow burn kind of a plot, might not be hard to do. The film also features a decent supporting cast that includes the lovely Abbie Cornish (and any fans of hers, this a film that might be worth watching…); the underrated David Morse has a smallish role as the town sheriff and character actor Eddie Marsan has a few lines before being dispense with.

However, the issue with the film is less with the actors and more with the script. The idea of an assassin walking into a small-town diner occupied with fellow assassins is an interesting concept. The issue, why would our Virtuoso accept such an ambiguous and mysterious mission? One with no name or picture? Doesn’t really question how his good old mentor would know a place and time and a couple of words. Words, by the way, he would ask a few people about, never giving thought that someone who doesn’t know what it means might be lying. Of course, one of them admits to knowing the words. Why? No idea.

He’s not terribly bright. In addition, this guy could’ve easily been taken out at any moment. Sure, there’s a reason revealed at the end, but doesn’t make it less idiotic. This isn’t to say The Virtuoso is a bad movie but with some editing to the script (how about a unisex name, so he doesn’t know if his target is male or female?).

Anyway, in the end this is one of those movies that whether like it or not, you won’t remember too much afterward, much like numerous other DTV releases in the past. Any fan of Anthony Hopkins can skip as he’s only in it for a few scenes (one where he’s cleaning his guns is completely pointless).



This release comes with a glossy slip cover and inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy. The only feature is an Audio Commentary with Executive Producer/Co-Writer/Director Nick Stagliano.


VIDEO – 4¼/5

Lionsgate releases The Virtuoso onto Blu-ray presented with a 2.39 widescreen aspect ratio and a 1080p high-definition transfer. For the most part this picture, even though a fair portion takes place at night or in dark rooms, is decent enough. Detail is sharp especially on close-ups and skin tones appear to be well balanced. There is no major instances of artifacting, aliasing or other flaws which is not a surprise for a new movie, even with one with a modest budget.

AUDIO – 4/5

The movie comes with a standard DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track. Dialogue comes across with good clarity, including Anthony Hopkins who sounded like he needed a cough drop, and the very few action scenes isn’t overpowering but still filled out the front and rear channels, as does an okay score by Brooke and Will Blair.


OVERALL – 2½/5

The Virtuoso is one of those movies that features a main character that one wonders how he became “The Virtuoso” because he makes some dumb mistakes, for one taking on a mission with only a place and time, that one wonders how he was such a well oiled assassin. In any case, maybe for Abbie Cornish this is worth a rental, otherwise it’s a skip.




Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

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