When a disgraced bodyguard is hired to transport a smarmy hitman to the Hague, the two have one weekend to outsmart, outrun, outgun, or evade, every assassin in Europe, and that’s if the two doesn’t shoot each other first.
I think it’s really important to add the ‘witness’ element as, without it, we have no idea why every assassin in Europe is after them and that, to me, is the I.I. – the bodyguard being hired is just par for the course, it’s only when the bad guys show up that everything changes.
“When a ruthless dictator sends a plague of assassins to kill a material witness, a disgraced bodyguard must protect the smarmy hitman who is the only one with the balls to testify against the tyrant in 48 hours time.”
I’ve taken out the “if the two [don’t] shoot each other first” since, in my mind, the obvious “odd couple” pairing is enough to suggest that conflict. I’ve framed it more from the bodyguard’s perspective simply because the title is “The Hitman’s Bodyguard”. I don’t think we need to know that they’re heading to The Hague, or that it’s set in Europe, I think the plot remains the same either way.
The thing I like about your logline, that I’ve tried to replicate in mine, is I can immediately tell that it’s an action, thriller, comedy.
This sounds like fun, but the threat seems to come from so many sources all at the same time, it doesn’t grip as much as it could. Could you include some info on why they have to go to the Hague, and why one has to escort the other? What are the consequences if they don’t (both) make it alive?
I haven’t seen the movie yet, but here’s my take combining what I appeal to me as the sizzle of both versions (“plague of assassins”, “outsmart, outrun, outgun”)
A disgraced bodyguard has 48 hours to transport a smarmy hitman to the Hague to testify against a dictator while outsmarting, outrunning, outgunning a plague of assassins. And not shoot each other first.
I violated the inviolable rule that says a logline can only be one sentence because the last 5 words constitute the button beat, a punch line so I think it’s justified, think it works. I mean, if you were delivering this logline in a pitch meeting, you’d pause for second after assassins before delivering the punch line. Right?
I dropped evade because I think that is an aspect of “outsmart”.
Having now seen the movie — thanks for bringing it to my attention, Richiev, it was a fun ride — I have an alternate version for the logline:
A disgraced bodyguard has 48 hours to transport the hitman who destroyed his career to the Hague to testify against a ruthless dictator while outrunning, outgunning a plague of assassins.
Yes, the two main characters are an Odd Couple with inherently clashing personalities who argue all the way to the Hague. But the Big Reveal is that it was the hitman who destroyed the bodyguard’s career. This, imho, is the story hook — the element that sells the script.
It deepens the conflict in their relationship. They aren’t just an Odd Couple . It’s a pairing of a character and the last man on earth he would want to protect if he only knew. And when he does find out in the 68th minute, somewhat more than 1/2 way through the film, the bodyguard storms away, refuses to defend the hitman against the next swarm of assassins.
The Big Reveal is the MPR moment in their relationship and the plot. Its exacerbates the situation, escalates conflict, increases jeopardy, the odds that objective goal won’t be achieved. It doesn’t give away how the story is going to end.
It’s a Big Reveal that shouldn’t be disclosed in a tagline, teaser or trailer to movie viewers. But, imho, it is a Big Reveal that should be disclosed in a logline to movie makers.