Theatrical Release: January 16, 2015


A furloughed convict and his American and Chinese partners hunt a high-level cybercrime network from Chicago to Los Angeles to Hong Kong to Jakarta.

Dove Review

“Blackhat” is a movie that cyber specialists will especially enjoy. Although I followed the plot for the most part, the filmmakers definitely lost me on a couple of occasions when they got into technical terms. But this movie is not simply a thinking person’s film. It features several action scenes including foot chases, fights, a bomb detonating a car, and a thrilling (if violent) conclusion. It has an “inside” joke too regarding Chris Hemsworth, “Thor” himself, as his character in this film, Nick Hathaway, is mentioned that he might “drop his big hammer.”

The movie opens with a computer sequence that leads to a power plant explosion in China. It is soon revealed that the explosion is a hack job. Captain Chen Dawai (Leehom Wang) and his sister Lien (Wei Tang) work to solve the case along with Carol Barrett (Viola Davis). It is Chen Dawai who suggests they get Hathaway to help, although he is stuck in prison in Pennsylvania. The captain knew him in the past but Hathaway is in solitary confinement for adding funds to prisoners’ accounts! He is quite a negotiator and insists that his time be commuted if he aids the team. The government wants to simply give him a furlough, but he wins the negotiation and lands his permanent freedom. Soon he joins the team and he and Lien become an item as they work together to find the hacker and stop him.

Solving the case will not come easily, however, and soon several members of the team are killed. Ultimately Hathaway and Lien are on their own and Hathaway will need all of his cyber skills to defeat the shrewd hacker who will stop at nothing, including more deaths, to get what he wants: more wealth. And Hathaway has more on his plate because the U.S. government wants him back for an illegal act in attempting to track down the murderous hacker.

Despite commendable ideas about getting a second chance and sacrificing to stop evil, the language, violence and sexual content prevent us from awarding the movie our Dove Seal.

Content Description

Faith: None
Integrity: None
Sex: An unmarried couple is seen making sexual movements, clothed, although no nudity is shown; kissing in several scenes and implied sex scenes with couple in bed together.
Language: GD-2; F-2; S-1; A-3; H-2; D-1; Cr*p-1; SOB-1; Po-1.
Violence: Lots of violence including man being hit over the head with a beer bottle and spurting blood; spurting blood from man being stabbed; man is shot and has a lot of blood from wound and he dies; corpse seen with a pool of blood; shrapnel from explosion causes officers to bleed; people are stabbed and there are fights with punching and kicking; people shot and killed; people writhe in pain before dying; man has a screwdriver stabbed into his temple.
Drugs: Man is found dead of a drug overdose and a hypodermic needle is seen sticking out of his arm; lots of bar scenes and drinking scenes including beer and wine and martinis; man uses a syringe to self-administer a prescription drug after he is injured; smoking in at least three scenes; and photo of a man smoking.
Nudity: Shirtless men in several scenes; cleavage.
Other: The topic of undercover hackers and cyber specialists; tension between characters; death and grief; man with a lot of tattoos on body.


Company: Universal Pictures
Director: Michael Mann
Genre: Action
Runtime: 135 min.
Reviewer: Edwin L. Carpenter