‘The Tax Collector’ Review: David Ayer’s Film Is Nothing But A Bloody Mess

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’s attempt to make a worthy action thriller falls flat and rings hollow.

The Tax Collector movie poster

Starring as David Cuevas (a tax collector for a gang lord) and as his trusty sidekick Creeper, The Tax Collector follows the former in his quest to survive when his boss’ old rival comes to town.

The trailer left me in doubt and I was close to shunning the latest movie from the filmmaker behind Suicide Squad. What influenced me to see it was LaBeouf’s involvement; he is a talented star and gives 100% commitment to any movie project he embarks upon.

I knew that LaBeouf plays a supporting role here but I was never prepared for just how inconsequential and useless his character was going to be.

Shia LaBeouf and Bobby Soto in THE TAX COLLECTOR
Shia LaBeouf and Bobby Soto in THE TAX COLLECTOR

The story presents the protagonist (Soto) as a deeply religious man who prays with his family and claims to believe in God. My question is this; how does such a man continue being involved in a bloody and distasteful venture?

I’m supposed to care for the hero but I honestly lost interest in him and everything to do with him after about 30 minutes into this muddled mess of a film.

Other than being a foul-mouthed, glorified driver, LaBeouf’s creeper has nothing to do for the entirety of The Tax Collector, making me wonder why on earth he took on the role in the first place.

A scene from the movie
A scene from the movie

Almost every scene is boring and I wonder why the director could come up something so lame (he wrote the script too, by the way).

The characters make irrational and illogical choices, the hero chooses to stay in town and fight the antagonist, opting the way of foolishness rather than fleeing with his family to safety. It’s a decision he ends up regretting a few minutes after he makes it as the carnage that ensues is something no one ever saw coming.

Almost everyone in the film tries too hard to convince the viewer that they are gangsters that it comes off as forced, overdone, and really annoying. The acting is so bad that I could only grimace in disgust and wait for the debacle before me to finish.

Shia LaBeouf as Creeper
Shia LaBeouf as Creeper

A group of black gangsters (I don’t know their names and I don’t care to know) suddenly align with the protagonist in the final act on the basis of a small ‘favor’ he did them. While I may not completely argue with this, the fact that they would so easily be ready to lay down their lives in a cause that isn’t theirs is one of the biggest plot holes in the film’s endless list of plot holes.

The Tax Collector is so bad that I wouldn’t want to waste more words in my review. Movie fans are advised to stay clear of it or be subjected to almost two hours of boredom.

David Ayer’s latest feature is as soulless as it is horrible. I really wish I devoted my time to something better.

Rating: 3/10.

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