In recent movie history, I can easily understand why people would want to revive seventies film standards, and try to make someone immortal in Hollywood today. THE AMERICAN is one such attempt, which people will tout as understated and subdued, restrained maybe. Unfortunately, the film delivers almost nothing. No attachment to anyone, not even any hatred. With a character driven movie (or even a book), and I am speaking as a writer here, lukewarm is a no-no. If people don't love your character, or want to see them drawn, quartered and hung from a crane in the town square, you have failed. This is exactly such a failure.
“...There are so many ways of being despicable it quite makes one's head spin. But the way to be really despicable is to be contemptuous of other people's pain. You ought to have some apprehension that the man you see before you was once even younger than you are now and arrived at his present wretchedness by imperceptible degrees.”