Hunter Killer

Rated 3.0

A seeming showdown between Russian and American submarines masks a coup by a rogue Russian defense minister bent on setting off World War III; in a sort of Hail-Mary play, an American sub commander (Gerard Butler) is ordered to work with a team of Navy Seals to rescue the hostage Russian president (Alexander Diachenko). Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs (Gary Oldman) fumes impotently back in Washington. Adapted by Arne L. Schmidt and Jamie Moss from a novel by George Wallace and Don Keith, the story is enjoyably far-fetched, a surprisingly fun throwback to the doomsday thrillers of the Cold War (Fail-Safe, The Bedford Incident, etc.). Muscular direction by Donovan Marsh keeps the action tense and clipping along, compensating somewhat for a tendency of minor characters to blur together.