Jennifer Garner’s movie, Peppermint, opens on September 7. That’s right after Labour Day weekend, when most parents have sent their kids back to school for the first week, probably after what feels like an interminable summer. I wonder if that will set the mood for this movie. Because it’s about a woman who loses her husband and her child to gang violence. And then becomes a lethal assassin.
“She’s back”, they say at one point in the first trailer released today. They’re referring to the character but, you know, they could also be referring to Sidney Bristow, or even Jennifer Garner herself. Because we haven’t seen her like this in a long, long, long ass time. And she looks f-cking amazing. That short hair wig scares the sh-t out of me but when she’s in revenge mode, with her hair just past chin length in beachy waves, strutting all bad ass in a tank top ready to kill, with bruises all over her shoulder, and blood all over her face, I am all in. Are you mad at me for focusing on the hair? I’m focusing on the hair because if I was an assassin, my hair would be in a ponytail when I’m about take out a motherf-cker. That said, there are tropes in all kinds of movies. In spy/assassin movies, when it’s James Bond, or a male spy, he always makes it through a fight or a chase without splitting his pants. These dudes are, like, drop-kicking and doing all kinds of crazy sh-t and somehow the crotch on their pants stays intact. If the spy or assassin is a woman, the hair is almost never, ever in a ponytail. For aesthetic? I’ll take it. As much as I’d wear my hair in a ponytail if I was killing someone IRL, if it’s in a movie? Please, I want the good hair at the same time.
Sorry. Hair is always my distraction. Let’s get back to Amazing Amy. Oh, look, that just slipped out. This is post-Affleck Jennifer Garner, in her most high-profile role in years, sliding right back into the physicality that made her so popular on Alias. And it’s like no time has passed at all. So what we’re getting here is at once familiar but also refresh. It’s a GREAT career move. I cannot wait to see how we’re going to be talking about Jennifer Garner in three months.
One thing that may be a concern about Peppermint that perhaps will resolve itself when we see the whole movie – I was uncomfortable about how the criminals are represented here, the members of the cartel. Certain stereotypes in this genre are fun (the hair, the suits, etc) and others are dangerous, especially in these times. That said, in the preview, they mention that Peppermint – I’m assuming that’s her “assassin name” – has become a folk hero of sorts in the community. There may be an opportunity here to be more inclusive with the new “family” that embraces her…if we don’t fall into the “white saviour” trope. Can we be optimistic for now? Because this really is a spectacular showcase for Jennifer Garner. I don’t think I’ve ever been this excited about her.
Attached - Jen out in LA on the weekend.