Oct 192021

The Protégé isn’t quite as good compared to Anna but I still was consistently entertained even with some of the flaws, which were overcome thanks to solid direction from Martin Campbell and a good core cast with Michael Keaton, Maggie Q and Samuel L. Jackson.



The Protégé

Genre(s): Action, Suspense/Thriller
Lionsgate | R – 109 min. – $42.99 | October 19, 2021

Date Published: 10/19/2021 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: Martin Campbell
Writer(s): Richard Wenk (written by)
Cast: Michael Keaton, Maggie Q, Samuel L. Jackson, Patrick Malahide, David Rintoul, Robert Patrick

Features: Commentary, Featurettes, Deleted Scene, Theatrical Trailer
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K, Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 2

Audio (4K/BD): English (Dolby Atmos 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Video (4K): 2160p/Widescreen 2.39
Video (BD): 1080p/Widescreen 2.39
Dynamic Range: HDR10, Dolby Vision
Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
Codecs: HEVC / H.265 (4K), MPEG-4 AVC (BD)
Region(s): A, B, C

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

Note: The screen captures were taken from the included Blu-ray disc.

THE MOVIE — 3½/5

Plot Synopsis: Rescued as a child by the legendary assassin Moody (SAMUEL L. JACKSON), Anna (MAGGIE Q) is the world’s most skilled contract killer. However, when Moody is brutally killed, she vows revenge for the man who taught her everything she knows. As Anna becomes entangled with an enigmatic killer (MICHAEL KEATON), their confrontation turns deadly, and the loose ends of a life spent killing weave themselves ever tighter.

Quick Hit Review: The Protégé is a film I had some mild interest in, mostly for Maggie Q and Michael Keaton, nothing against Samuel L. Jackson since he’s in every other Hollywood film anyway. While I can’t say I was completely in love with this, still found it to be a fun action-thriller akin to 2018’s Anna and Red Sparrow, although I think I liked Anna a tad more.

In terms of the actual action, I don’t think there’s any major standouts, a bit of surprise since this was helmed by Martin Campbell, the man who directed both Pierce Brosnan (GoldenEye) and Daniel Craig (Casino Royale) for their James Bond debuts, each had some great action sequences. Course, it is doubtful this one had a lower budget in comparison.

There is also an issue with the finale. Technically speaking, it is satisfactory and features a solid fight with Keaton and Maggie Q, not to mention a monologue with Samuel L. Jackson who does it better than anybody working today. The problem is after one character explains how the only way to get to the villain’s lavish estate was through rat-infested jungles, and then Maggie Q and Jackson must get around drones, motion monitors and other high-tech security. Sounds like a challenge. Except they completely bypass that and the pair are able to get there with no issues (and utilize their own drone to capture a necessary passkey).

However, with that being said, the biggest reason to see The Protégé is for its respectable cast. All three have shown their ability to kick ass with Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury in the MCU, Maggie Q on Nikita and Mission: Impossible III and Michael Keaton from, of course, Batman (1989), and none of them disappoint. In fact, even though Keaton is 28 years her senior, he and Maggie Q share some great chemistry both in conversation and brutal fighting.

In the end, The Protégé, flaws and all, still well worth checking out and I’d imagine I’ll revisit this eventually as there is enough of a decent story, direction and acting that it was pretty entertaining.



This release comes with a glossy slip cover and inside is a redemption code for the Digital HD copy.

Audio Commentary — Director Martin Campbell. The veteran filmmaker breaks down the film providing details on filming locations, the characters and more. Not the most exciting track but informative nevertheless.

Scars of the Past: Making The Protégé (37:10) is a pretty lengthy behind-the-scenes featurette with some on-location interviews.

Anna vs. Rembrandt (7:59) breaks down the two characters’ fight scene.

Deleted Scene (1:48) — Singular scene that doesn’t amount to very much.

Theatrical Trailer (2:33)


4K VIDEO – 4¾/5, BLU-RAY VIDEO – 4¾/5

Lionsgate releases The Protégé onto 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray where it’s shown in the original 2.39 widescreen aspect ratio and given 2160p and 1080p high-definition transfers respectively. All in all, the picture on both formats look great, along with the sharp detail, there is some variety in the colors with a more neutral palette at times, rich textures in others and some bright colors along with well balanced black levels such as the night scenes in Vietnam or darkened interiors where one can still discern objects or people. The natural noise is still ever present, especially on the 4K giving it some good consistency.

AUDIO – 4¾/5

Both formats come with a Dolby Atmos track. Although not quite awe-inspiring compared with other new movies, this one still is pretty darn good. Along with dialogue that comes through with fine clarity, mostly via the center speaker, there is some great depth for the various action sequences, including gunfire and an explosion, plus some finer elements like ambient noises as well as the score by Rupert Parkes (“Into the Night”, “How to Get Away with Murder”).


Overall, The Protégé isn’t quite as good compared to Anna but I still was consistently entertained even with some of the flaws, which were overcome thanks to solid direction from Martin Campbell and a good core cast with Michael Keaton, Maggie Q and Samuel L. Jackson.




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