Friday, 25 August 2017

Atomic Blonde (2017)

A British agent is sent to Cold War Berlin to follow-up on the murder of a fellow agent and try and uncover a list of exposed agents before the Soviets acquire it.

At it's core, this is merely a generic action flick that seems to think far too highly of itself without ever really proving why. It just hopes you won't know under the late 80s paint it has awkwardly tried to cover itself in.

Seeing as it is all about spies and the Cold War, the film gives the impression that it thinks it is being slick and clever about the plotting when, in reality, it's all a bit of a drag and all so snooze-inducingly predictable (thanks to both it being so boringly obvious - though apparently European intelligence agencies hire idiots - and the marketing starting things off with bits from the end). I had little interest or engagement with whatever was happening onscreen, just biding my time listening to their 80s soundtrack (which they could have done more with but was, in fairness, one of the more enjoyable parts of the film) until the next action sequence.

The action is where the film fares much better as director David Leitch (who apparently had a hand in the original John Wick) proves he has a competent hand when assembling such scenes though some moments do go on longer than perhaps they should and they do sometimes feel like they're trying too hard. Regardless, they're watchable. Well, watchable when you a) haven't already seen it all in the trailer (when you just wait for the particular moments to pop up) and b) when you're not switched off because of the lack of engagement with plot or characters.

Even without the marketing trying to scuttle the ship, 'Atomic Blonde' is, at best, a disposable, mundane action flick that may brief distract you as you flick through the TV channels. It has a couple of entertaining action sequences and fun soundtrack but little else of note as it struggles to create any form of meaningful engagement ultimately resulting in something quite drab.

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