The Numbers Station (2013)

Well… I should probably go see why others gave it negative reviews but I thought it was a not so good movie that was still entertaining to watch.  The premise would have played very well to the 1970’s crowd but these days, not so much.  The CIA doesn’t kill it’s employees instead of letting them retire.  It doesn’t kill civilians because they know too much.  It doesn’t really, really use numbers stations even though some of them are still operational (my favorite is UVB-76).  One time pad “codes” have actually been broken in the past and it’s usually because of user error not because someone let a radio operator live.  They usually just change the pads and move on with life.  Also, there are probably a lot of fail-safes in place when and if assassinations are ordered and it’s doubtful 15 of the higher level CIA management would be unquestioningly murdered because of a one-time radio transmission especially when radio isn’t like government magic where only the one facility could ever possibly transmit on a specific frequency, anyone driving to a different city has had the experience of finding different stations on their favorite presets.

If you watch the movie and then the preview (instead of the other way around), you start to understand why some of the movie is confused and mysterious.  I know they wanted a thriller but Malin Akerman’s character muddles the plot at times that are never explained later and you’re left with a lot of “what the what?” moments.

They can still transmit to swarms of CIA agents and instead of sending a new message, they have to backtrack via an email message (lucky break!) and then brave certain death to go outside for a cell phone which doesn’t get used until the very end when it is no longer necessary.  Why not transmit, “Tell the CIA to send the black SUV’s and guys with guns to our location and, shit, what was I supposed to say, mmm, fuck, it was right on the tip of my tongue…  I’m going to keep trying to get into this guy’s pants no matter how cold, heartless and offensive he is to me?…  no that wasn’t it…  could someone find out how they got all this confidential information on all of us and the goddamn security code for only one day and not ours?… and why they didn’t just shoot us at the gate?… no, oh yeah!  Don’t fucking kill anyone you dumbasses!  Wait, you mean they aren’t always listening to the radio?  They’ve already killed everyone?…  dammit…  no, just because you like to watch me sleep and have a shitty personality doesn’t mean I want to be your bang-buddy, now that it’s over, you’re just not sparkly enough for me, fuck off you creepy brooding weirdo.”

TL;DR  The illegitimate offspring of Grosse Pointe Blank and Eagle Eye rewritten by Agatha Christie.  If you can get past the dumb shit then it’s fun to see.

Kryptosfan

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