There’s something unusual about Drone, the upcoming film starring Sean Bean as the CIA-employed remote pilot for a plane that drops missiles on terrorists abroad, and it’s not the plot. If anything, this looks like a more personalized version of the kind of ”flawed-but-noble American vs. terrorist” plot that has become Hollywood’s go-to for international action thrillers during the past two decades. This time, it looks as though a man from Karachi whose wife and child were killed in a drone strike has tracked down the guy he holds responsible—Bean’s genial but secretive pilot—and brings a bomb into the quiet suburb with him in an attempt to even the scales. It has the potential for some intriguing moral gray areas to be explored, and possibly a literal ticking time-bomb scenario.
But that’s the not most striking part of the film. No, the real magic comes from the fact the director, Jason Borque, is the man who helmed almost the entirety of season one of the disturbingly misbegotten reality series The Two Coreys, starring Corey Feldman and the late Corey Haim. Sure, in the past couple of years he’s also directed entertainingly titled made-for-TV movies like Are You My Daughter?, Stonados, and Asteroid: Final Impact, but all of that takes a backseat to the many, many questions we have about the Haim/Feldman team-up project. What possessed them to create a reality show so screamingly inauthentic on its surface, it makes The Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills resemble an Errol Morris documentary? How awkward did it feel, day to day, attempting to make lighthearted comedy out of profound psychological trauma? Was the intensely depressing real-life situation of the former child stars what lead Borque to jump ship before the show began its season season?
It seems unlikely that Drone, a slick-looking thriller, will provide answers to these questions. What it does provide, however, is a screenplay by Paul Birkett, someone who seems to be as at home as Borque in the realm of TV schlockbusters, with films like Ghost Shark, Arachnoquake, and Ice Twisters on his resume. It’s unclear whether Drone will mark a significant uptick in quality, but Bean’s presence alone guarantees some curious viewers who likely wouldn’t have tuned in for Borque’s previous film, I Didn’t Kill My Sister, a made-for-TV flick about a woman accused of drowning her anchorwoman sister. Drone comes out in select theaters and on demand Memorial Day weekend.