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Cliche-ridden Columbiana 

Zoe Saldana actioner lacks momentum

click to enlarge zoe-saldana-columbiana-5.jpg

Zoe Saldana stars as a revenge-minded assassin in Olivier Megaton’s action thriller, which takes a simple, A-grade premise and makes a hash of it with B-level execution. After a tense opening sequence in which a young, resourceful Colombian girl watches her parents get killed by a rival crime boss, we catch up with her in adult form in America, still intent on bloody payback. Saldana is a live, sexy and credible hitperson, going about her business stealthily in body-hugging black, but the film’s momentum halts whenever she’s not in motion. Megaton’s direction is clumsy, the script---co-written by Luc Besson of *Leon: The Professional* fame---seems in need of at least another draft and the supporting actors overplay their roles. Saldana and her character deserve better than these corny cliches.

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