I've never played the video games or really know anything about the storyline other then it is about a hitman. I was compelled to watch this film for the simple reason that Timothy Olyphant is the man. He can do comedy(Broken Hearts Club, The Girl Next Door), action (Deadwood, Man Apart), and try to freshen up a shitty chick flick (Catch and Release). Olyphant doesn't get a chance to do much in the way of acting in Hitman, but he is quite good when he does.
Hitman is about a fellow by the name of Agent 47. Agent 47 was a cast-off that was recruited by "the organization" at a young age. He was taught to kill with cold efficiency and was given a bar code on the back of his head. There were no names for the children, just a numbers. With his skill shown in several early action scenes, you get the impression that Agent 47 could make short work of Jason Bourne.
Agent 47 gets a job in Mother Russia to rub out the current President... only something goes wrong, which of course there has to be for a movie to take place. 47 finds himself on the run when his employer sells him out. He kidnaps an absolutely gorgeous prostitute (Olga Kurylenko) who supposedly witnessed the assassination attempt, but we will soon find out that is not the case. Dougray Scott plays an Interpol agent investigating our title character's misdeeds around the globe.
The plot goes deeper into Russian politics and really gets bogged down in trying to be too mysterious about what is really going on in the conspiracy. The Russian actors really aren't that good and gives off a stink of made for tv which is really puzzling with the large budget of the film (70 mil). A more streamlined approach would have suited this launching pad of a franchise much better. I tend to like my action movies with less plot... which hurts me to say. Commando, for example, is the perfect action vehicle. Someone kidnaps Arnold's daughter to blackmail him... Arnold has to get her back... simple, to the point. I think movies get too caught up with trying to make a complex plot when really all people who watch action films want is ACTION.
With all the problems I had with Hitman, I genuinely hope they do get to make a sequel with a better plot and secondary actors. The look of the film was also quite impressive. From the locales to the costumes, it was a definite unique vision. Bottom line, Olyphant is a bad ass and there is lots of great eyecandy and explosions. Action fans could do a lot worse than Hitman.