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  • Writer's pictureKen Silvers

The Man from Toronto

When it comes to actor Woody Harrelson I have always had mixed emotions about his films. To me he is an adequate actor providing pleasant diversions in his roles. Mr. adequate has returned in the new film "The Man from Toronto" where he stars alongside firecracker actor Kevin Hart. The two actors are extremes, one very hyper and the other laid back, which actually works in the film. The film begins a bit slow, but eventually improves. The story introduces the character of Teddy (Hart) a man who has attempted to start an internet athletic page, but has failed miserably. Teddy even attempts to sell his idea of "non-contact boxing" to a local gym owner, but his idea is rejected. Despite his failed efforts, Teddy manages to plan a nice birthday gift for his wife, a visit to a day spa, and while she is there he travels to a secluded cabin to prepare her next birthday surprise but due to a glitch winds up at the wrong cabin where those inside are waiting for the arrival of The Man From Toronto (Harrelson), an expert assassin. The men inside the cabin mistake Teddy for the assassin, and expect him to interrogate the man they are holding hostage. Despite his shock, Teddy is able to extract information from the prisoner, but just after the reveal the FBI raids the cabin. The FBI informs Teddy they want him to continue to assume the identity of TMFT in order to help them catch exiled Venezuelan Colonel Marin Hoyos, who is in Washington, DC planning an assination of the President of Venezuela. As the plan unfolds, Teddy eventually meets TMFT, whose real name is Randy, and after fighting at first, they form an uneasy alliance. After Randy reaches out to his handler, played by Ellen Barkin, he decides to continue the charade of Teddy impersonating him. The duo travel to Puerto Rico for an assignment, where after successfully completing yet another interrogation, encounter yet another assin, this one The Man From Miami (Pierson Fode), who attempts to steal an item from the duo that will lead to the killing of the President of Venezuela. After fighting off TMFM, the duo travel to D.C. where they meet up with Teddy's wife, and eventually encounter other assassins sent to get the item needed for the assination. Randy and Teddy have a no-holes-barred fight with the other assassins, but eventually they manage to thwart all of them. Meanwhile, Teddy's wife is leaving him out of disappointment, and he must race to keep her from going home to her mother. The film ends with the duo managing to thwart the assination attempt, and successfully defeating the other assassins and their handler. At the conclusion the story moves forward one year, with Rany in a new profession, and Teddy and his wife Lori (Jasmine Mathews) expecting a child. This film is described as an action/comedy, but I felt the action was stronger than the comedy, which is often tepid. I'm not sure when Hollywood decided Kevin Hart "yelling" and in panic mode was humorous. There are a few chuckles in the film, but not enough for my tastes. The lead actors do the best with the material they have, and are well cast as polar opposites. "The Man from Toronto" is a pleasant diversion of a film, but is the tale of a hitman who doesn't quite hit the mark.

Now playing on Netflix. (Rated PG-13)


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