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film review

Sean Bean in Drone.

Drone-warfare films tend to carry the message that bomb-dropping jockeys are so far away from "battlefields" that they're removed from the consequences of their remote-control actions. We get that in Drone, a taut Canadian thriller from the Vancouver-born director Jason Bourque. Veteran actor Sean Bean is an American civilian contracted to obliterate Pakistanis from an office chair in suburban USA. His recently deceased father, we learn, "dropped bombs on Hitler." The scriptwriter's math is off: Bean's middle-aged character is too young to have a father of such vintage. More importantly, we're being pushed this notion that dropping bombs from an airplane is morally superior to drone strikes. We got this in 2014's Good Kill, but there's a good case to be made that it's a poppycock narrative. That aside, Drone is a simmering, on-target drama involving a visiting Pakistani businessman whose motive and briefcase are both suspicious. Played adroitly by Patrick Sabongui, this guy wouldn't hurt a fly. Or would he? A couple of nice plot twists overshadow the predictable sound-of-sorrow ethnic wail that closes the film.

Topher Grace says the remote set of the military satire War Machine made for an intimate experience with the other actors. The Netflix film, starring Brad Pitt, starts streaming May 26.

The Canadian Press

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