March 1, 2021

Spotter Up

In Depth Tactical Solutions

‘Outside The Wire’ Trailer: Anthony Mackie & Damson Idris Star

3 min read

Mikael Håfström directs the story, set in the future, about a drone pilot (Idris) who is sent into a deadly militarized zone where he finds himself working for an android officer (Mackie) tasked to locate a doomsday device before insurgents do.

Netflix will release on January 15, 2021.

Screenplay comes from Rob Yescombe and Rowan Athale. Producers are Ben Pugh, Erica Steinberg, Brian Kavanaugh-Jones, Anthony Mackie and Jason Spire.


In 2036, a military intervention of Russian mercenaries leads the US to deploy peacekeeping forces in Ukraine. During an operation, a team of United States Marines and “Gumps” (robotic soldiers) are ambushed. Disobeying a direct order, drone pilot 1st Lt. Harp deploys a Hellfire missile in a drone strike against a suspected enemy launcher, killing two of the Marines but saving the remaining 38. As punishment, Harp – who has never personally served in a war zone before – is sent to Camp Nathaniel, the US base of operations in Ukraine where he is assigned to Captain Leo, who reveals that he is secretly a highly advanced and experimental android super-soldier masquerading as an eccentric human military officer.

Harp and Leo set out on a mission to prevent pro-Russian terrorist Victor Koval from gaining control of a network of Cold War-era nuclear missile silos, under the cover of delivering vaccines to a refugee camp. On the way, their convoy responds to a reported attack on a friendly aid truck, which results in a stand-off between the US Marines and armed locals. After a Gump “pre-empts” (read: shoots) a local who threw a rock at the Gump, Captain Leo manages to negotiate a peaceful solution to the confrontation by giving the locals the contents of the aid truck. However, pro-Russian insurgents ambush the gathered locals and US Marines, which leads to a firefight. This forces Leo and a nervous Harp to travel to the refugee camp on foot, while the US Marines remain behind to engage the insurgents.

After arriving at the refugee compound, Leo and Harp are shot at by an insurgent using a sniper rifle, killing a few civilians, but missing them. Harp watches as Leo tortures the insurgent for information, before leaving him to be killed by the gathered mob, which disturbs Harp. Leo and Harp meet their contact Sofiya, a resistance leader, at an orphanage. She tells Harp that US drone strikes are responsible for the deaths of many of the orphans’ parents, further unsettling him. Sofiya leads them to an arms dealer who knows the location of a bank vault containing nuclear launch codes that Koval is looking for. Harp and Leo travel to the bank, where they are met by Koval’s forces which include several Russian-made Gumps. While Harp gains the courage to help rescue civilians caught in a crossfire between the Russian Gumps and a squad of US Gumps, Leo retrieves the codes but Koval is nowhere to be found. A drone strike called in by Harp destroys the bank and several surrounding buildings, leading the military command to believe both Koval and Leo are dead.

Harp reunites with Leo who tells him that he has his own plans for the codes, and that he has been manipulating Harp into helping him escape the eye of the military command. He knocks out Harp and leaves him on the side of the road where he is picked up by Sofiya’s men. Leo meets with Koval to give him the codes, but ends up killing him after Koval refuses to give Leo access to a nuclear missile silo under his control. Harp informs Sofiya and his commander of Leo’s actions, and they realize Leo is planning to launch the nuclear missiles at the United States himself, in order to prevent the country from fighting more destructive wars in future. Harp volunteers to infiltrate the silo and finds Leo has taken over. He disables Leo but not before Leo initiates the launch of a missile and explaining that his true goal was for the android super-soldier program to end in failure. Harp escapes just as the silo is destroyed by a drone strike before the missile can launch; the resulting explosion kills Leo in the process. In the aftermath, Harp returns to Camp Nathaniel and receives praise from his commander, who then informs Harp that he is going home. In the final scene, Harp leaves the base.

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