Assassins is a 1995 action film, directed by Richard Donner. It involves the competition between two rival assassins, one an older, veteran assassin and the other a reckless younger challenger eager to become the top assassin in the world. The main stars were Sylvester Stallone, Antonio Banderas and Julianne Moore.The senior assassin is Robert Rath, (Stallone) a rather sober and efficient man who always gets his target while also making a point of minimizing or avoiding collateral damage. However Rath is becoming tired of the job and increasingly thinking of retirement, and whether or not the people he works for will even let him retire. The younger guy is Miguel Bain, (Banderas) who is pretty much a psychopath who turned his hobby to a profession. He is also a competitive rising star in the field and looking for ways to increase his reputation. Undermining or even killing old guys such as Rath is just one more way to do that.The two first cross paths when they are sent after the same target. Rath tries to force a confrontation and learn who sent Bain, but Bain fights him to a stalemate and escapes. Both of them are once again sent after the same target, this time a woman called Electra (Moore), a surveillance expert and information thief. Someone is very interested in the latest files she stole. Finding himself unable to kill the woman, Rath decides to save her and retire on the spot. Too bad his retirement starts with Bain chasing both of them.While throughout the film Rath is treated as an old man and Bain as a young punk, the ages of the actors didn't particularly help. Stallone was 49 years old, Banderas 35-years old. Part of it was the original casting ideas, called for the Rath role going to Sean Connery, Michael Douglas and/or Arnold Schwarzenegger. (At the time Connery was in his 60s, Douglas in 50s, Schwarzenegger in his 40s). Ideas for casting Bain included Tom Cruise, Woody Harrelson and Christian Slater. (Again, at the time Cruise and Harrelson were in their early 30s, Slater in his 20s).The main scriptwriters, Larry and Andy Wachowski, ended up protesting several changes in their script, which they felt made the final product too different from what they had conceived. This did not prevent them from selling to the same producer, Joel Silver, a second script they had completed alongside Assassins. "The Matrix" would not be ready for release until 1999. While not a critical hit, the Assassins was a modest commercial hit. It earned about $83,506,268 in the International market. With about 30 million from the United States market, it was the 59th most successful film of its year.
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