The fun begins when Geena Davis, a demure, redheaded, schoolteaching single mother who suffers from amnesia and cannot recall having been the world's deadliest hired assassin eight years ago, collides with a reindeer. Voila. Davis begins to get hints of her previous vocation. In a dream sequence Sigmund Freud would have fired a patient for having, goody-two-shoes Davis stands atop a stormy cliff facing her sexy, bottle-blonde image in a mirror. "I want a cigarette," growls the tough-talkin' reflection, to which the nice Davis prissily replies, "I don't smoke." "Ya used to!" snaps the blonde. Director Renny Harlin chooses to cut from this all-too-revealing dream sequence to a dump truck picking up garbage (discuss meaning amongst yourselves).
Soon Davis's dark side starts cropping up during waking hours. The mere chopping of a carrot turns into a dicin', slicin' display of aggression that is, frankly, reminiscent of one of those infomercials for sharp cutlery. Whipping through every vegetable in the kitchen, Davis beams maniacally, "I used to do this. I'm a chef!" Perhaps not. When she nails a tomato to the wall with a perfectly tossed knife, her daughter and boyfriend are justifiably terrified. "Chefs do that," explains Davis. But later, when she tells her kid, who's just fractured a wrist, "Life is pain! Get used to it!" there's no pretending Davis's previous life was benevolent. To make the point even clearer, a one-eyed thug who knew hit woman Davis way back when breaks into the house and hits Davis on the head with a heavy pot, whereupon she knocks him out cold with a cream pie in the kisser, then breaks his neck, and, as her boyfriend watches, tastes the pie filling off the corpse, explaining, "Chefs do that."