‘Beckett:’ Exciting, emotional chase through Greece, it’s strong addition to thriller genre


Not many thrillers are able to capture both the emotional and action side of a story. A film needs to have engaging moments and be built around the more emotional side to get viewers to care about the characters. Netflix’s “Beckett” does just that.

“Beckett” tells the story of Beckett and April, his girlfriend, on vacation in Greece. However, Beckett soon finds himself alone. Due to protests in the city, Beckett and April drive away from Athens to a small town, but on the way, Beckett falls asleep at the wheel and drives the car off a small cliff into someone’s house, killing April. What Beckett witnesses in the house throws him into a cat-and-mouse chase through Greece that involves political groups, the Greek police and the U.S. embassy.

There is no shortage of entertainment in this movie. Each action sequence is smartly done and never over the top. John David Washington’s flawless performance as Beckett makes the film worth watching. With two major productions already to his credit, Washington plays the character in exactly the way that is needed in order to make the movie work. Other cast members, though their roles are small, perform well, including Alicia Vikander (April) and Vicky Krieps from Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Phantom Thread” and M. Night Shyamalan’s “Old.” The film was produced by the director of 2017’s “Call Me By Your Name.”

The movie impresses with its cinematography. Three-quarters of the film is set in the Greek countryside, allowing the filmmakers to showcase amazing vistas of the ocean and mountains. Because of this, and the movie’s intensity, it’s almost impossible to take your eyes off the screen.

“Beckett” carries a real emotional charge. The first twenty minutes start off blissfully enough. Washington and Vikander do an amazing job getting the audience to care about their relationship. They are believable as a couple, and that’s what makes the whole rest of the movie so fascinating. During the rest of the film, we are reminded that Beckett is remorseful over the death of his girlfriend, and even believes that he should’ve died too. As the story proceeds, this idea becomes his obsession, driving his determination.

The only questionable plot point is the unveiling and use of the political conspiracy the film is centered around. The actual situation isn’t explained during the movie. There’s one scene where it is supposedly revealed but requires a few viewings to understand what is being divulged. A good Google search should also suffice to clear up a few missing pieces of the actual conflict, so it isn’t a major setback.

All in all, “Beckett” is a fun time. This constant chase-scene style film is a good addition to the thriller genre. Anyone looking for a movie that they can easily dive into while watching excellent performers at work will love this Netflix film.

Grade: B+