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:: Elektra

If I was a psychiatrist, I would love to open my business in the world of a comic book. After all they are littered with superheroes that suffer deep psychological scars. Batman has never got over the murder of his parents, The Hulk has obvious rage issues and now we are presented with Elektra, a minor title from the Marvel stable and a character who not only has intimacy issues but also has an acute case of obsessive compulsive disorder. Gone are the days where a superhero could get by fighting for truth, justice and the American way, now they all need their own personal therapists.

If you’re still scratching your head and trying to work out what the hell an Elektra is, don’t feel bad. Hollywood’s current obsession with turning every comic book property into a movie means that our screens are going to be littered with these obscure characters for quite some time. However, for the sake of context, Elektra is a female assassin with quasi-psychic abilities who was also the one-time lover of Daredevil, the blind lawyer-by-day, red-clad hero-by-night, as played by Ben Affleck in the 2003 film. Anyway, none of that is of much consequence as this film picks up some time later where we find that Elektra is world’s most feared assassin. She is so dedicated to her job that she spends most evenings on her hands and knees scrubbing her DNA off the floor and cleaning her weapons. She can also disappear at will, one of the more annoying ways that those ninja-types will often exit a conversation.

But as we’ve seen in a thousand assassin films before, things become more complicated when she is given a new target to kill but suffers from a crisis in confidence. What follows is a dazzling but completely incomprehensible mess as Elektra goes on the run, protecting those she was first hired to kill. Jennifer Garner has an undeniable presence on screen, but she is given nothing more to do than brood, kick and squeeze herself into eye-popping red bodice. The villains of the piece are more promising, but bear more than a passing resemblance to the evil assassins in The Ninja Scroll. It’s hard to work out just what director Rob Bowman was aiming for with this film. It’s part friendly action movie and part kung-fu fantasy, but on the whole it’s just very forgettable.