American Assassin is an action thriller film directed by Michael Cuesta and based on Vince Flynn’s 2010 novel of the same name. The film stars Dylan O’Brien as Mitch Rapp, a civilian who turns to counter-terrorism after losing his fiancé during a terrorist attack on a beach. Mitch is soon discovered by CIA Deputy Director Irene Kennedy who then assigns Mitch to Cold War veteran Stan Hurley to train. After joining Hurley’s Orion Team, a highly secretive organization supported by the CIA, but outside the Agency, Rapp must stop a mysterious operative, nicknamed “Ghost”, intent on starting a war in the Middle East. American Assassin is a fun action film with relatively quick pacing. The actors are quite solid in their roles and never take themselves too seriously. Dylan O’Brien is phenomenal as Mitch Rapp. It’s great that he’s gotten back into the swing of things after his accident a couple years back. He plays an action star very well and brings a great amount of conflict, hurt, and unpredictability that a character like Mitch needs to be believable. Michael Keaton and Sanaa Lathan also do a fine job as Stan Hurley and Irene Kennedy respectively. Their characters share a history that is alluded to but never fully explored. This leaves just enough mystery for the audience that can be further explored if any sequels are developed. The plot is pretty straightforward, but this does not hinder the film in the slightest. Even though you begin to realize where the film is going, you don’t quite know how you’re going to get there. This is primarily due to Mitch Rapp’s unpredictable nature. The fight choreography in the film was great. The use of mixed martial arts allowed for every fight scene to feel more gritty and realistic. This was especially apparent during Mitch’s confrontation with “Ghost” (Taylor Kitsch). The characters were not overly muscular and it made sense for them to exchange grapples and pins to win a fight for their life. Especially when the person they are fighting against also has guns and knives. The film’s training sequences were also interesting to watch but left me wanting more. There was no sense of time and were not really sure how long Mitch trained with the Orion Team. I give American Assassin a Decent 7.8/10. This was a great film for Dylan O’Brien to return the silver screen with. Fun, fast, and action-packed, I hope this film is successful enough to warrant a sequel. Afterall, Vince Flynn did write 11 other books.