Netflix continues to put out a slew of feature movies on their streaming service. Some are good, many are not so good. Their newest, Kate starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead, is somewhere in-between.
Kate (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) was an assassin working with Varrick (Woody Harrelson) who recruited her as a young girl. She had developed herself into a finely tuned killer, with a set of skills unlike anyone, leading to her never failing in an attack.
However, after a botched assassination attempt of a Yakuza in Tokyo, Kate was poisoned and is dying. Having about 24 hours to live, Kate sets off on a mission of vengeance against the Yakuza family that she blamed for her poisoning. As she was executing her revenge, she meets and bonds with Ani (Miku Patricia Martineau), the daughter of the man she had killed during the botched assassination attempt, who feels rejected and isolated form her family.
Kate continued her brutal assault on the Yakuza and her race against the clock as she searched for the family head, Kijima (Jun Kunimura), whom she blamed for her eventual death from poison.
There is nothing especially original about Kate. In fact, the story is predictable and the ideas are very repetitive of other revenge movies. Easily the best part of Kate is Mary Elizabeth Winstead. She has a great screen presence and a ton of charisma as she battled through the pain of her injuries to become a figurative female Terminator. Winstead handled the action deftly and provided some surprisingly solid emotional beats in the film. She is clearly the standout. Kate’s relationship with Ani was intriguing too as we, as the audience, knew that Kate was not being honest with her about Ani’s father’s death and we could see that this was going to play a role in the plot.
The action was good. It was shot cleanly and could be seen, which is a problem for a lot of these action movies. My favorite moment was one with Kijima and a samurai sword near the end of the film.
SPOILER: Is there any movie around that Woody Harrelson does not turn out to be the traitorous ad guy? This seems to happen way too much and I saw this one coming a long time before. END OF SPOILER.
Kate has its entertaining moments and Mary Elizabeth Winstead is a star. There are plenty of negatives about the film, but if you approach it with the right attitude, you should have a decent viewing experience. However, Kate does not feel like a film that you will remember much about a few weeks later.