The Man from U. N. C. L. E.

An uneven affair!


The Man from U. N. C. L. E.

  • An uneven affair!

The Man from U. N. C. L. E.

  • An uneven affair!


Rated

PG-13

Starring

Henry Cavill
Armie Hammer
Alicia Vikander
Hugh Grant
Elizabeth Debicki

Written by

Guy Ritchie
Lionel Wigram

Directed by

Guy Ritchie


coming up

What to Expect

A Guy Ritchie period spy-actioner.

That’s all you have to say when you witness the trailers of The Man from U. N. C. L. E., and that’s all you’re meant to know to expect nothing but the world out of the director who’s been made famous through such modern action classics like Snatch, Rock’n’Rolla and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

I, for one, have always felt that his most successful – and yet underrated – film was Revolver, which managed to boldly glide through concepts that were decisively subversive within the framework of the genre the movie was within. Extracting fantastic performances from the likes of currently generic performers like Ray Liotta and Jason Statham, the movie was as fascinating as it was frustrating (which was also, in turn, the very reason it was misunderstood).

But we’re not here to talk about the Ritchie of that phase (nor the one with Madonna where he decided to direct Swept Away for some rather unfathomable reason). We’re here to talk about the mainstream, post-Sherlock Holmes Ritchie, whose decisive stylistic tendencies might have worked for the first part of this remixed-from-Conan-Doyle franchise, but went overboard, relying heavily on style and the unmistakably nuanced chemistry and humor to take Game of Shadows forward. Not that the film was terrible; in fact, it was moderately enjoyable. but you’ve got to have a screenplay as heavy and dynamic to support all that glitziness, don’tcha?

And that’s the one very high skepticism that I’ve been keeping on the back of my head for U. N. C. L. E. Knowing, however, that Ritchie’s managed to have more rights in his kitty than wrongs, it would be quite difficult to be a complete skeptic and not have a single expectation of the film, now, would it?

What’s it About?

CIA agent Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill; Man of Steel) is forced to work alongwith Russian spy Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer; The Social Network) on a mission that (they hope) leads them to the mysterious disappearance of a scientist, tagging his daughter (Alicia Vikander; Ex Machina) along on the operation. What neither of them know is that the stakes are higher, and the job’s more sinister than is out in the open to them.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

ALICIA VIKANDER as Gaby in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2015 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC. AND RATPAC-DUNE ENTERTAINMENT LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

“If you like it then you shoulda put a tracker on it.”

The thing with Guy Ritchie movies in the mainstream environment is that the attention-to-detail within almost eighty percent of the film’s elements are pretty much on track. Add to that the rather stylishly shot action sequences and some fun narrative party-tricks, and you’re in for a jazzy summer-movie if you’ve gotten your popcorn with you. This film is filled with almost the same positives; except for there’s one small stickler: like Game of Shadows, The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is also unfortunately reliant heavily on trademark visual styles and narrative party-tricks at the cost of a coherent narrative.

That point’s definitely a debatable one, except for if you’re Ritchie and you’re directing a splendid team as the one here. With a cast as talented as Hammer, Cavill and Vikander, you’re meant to see a splendid narrative spliced with a story that’s meant to drive things forward. And for a film that’s supposed to be known for its action, there are just about two memorable action set-pieces that come to mind – the introductory and the penultimate, to name them specifically – the rest of which are mindless fillers in a story that’s stuck with some highly stylized narrative party-tricks that do well initially, but are repeated to a point where the effect is worn off, thereby rendering the impact nullified. There are couple of elliptical shots that are brought together by hyper-stylized split screen work, but there’s a point during the beginning of a later action set-piece where the whole razzmatazz is bitten off more than can be chewed.

Not that the film has no credit to it; there’s terrific humor in some pivotal scenes that are made to be remembered. A pastiche film that’s a subtly parodic throwback to spy films of yore, they’ve definitely gotten Cavill’s charming character just right. Cavill’s Napoleon seems to play off Armie’s Illya terrifically, giving them just the bouncy chemistry that their professional relationship – later giving way to a possibly quiet friendship – is able to provide. Vikander’s Gaby has a character that’s dynamic enough to serve up many a turn to the unwitting viewer. This in itself goes off really well and saves the film from being a complete hot mess that it could have been.

HENRY CAVILL as Solo in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2015 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC. AND RATPAC-DUNE ENTERTAINMENT LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Agent Swag

John Mathieson’s cinematography is sharp, and provides some delicious direction to the rather dynamic camerawork in quite the few set-pieces (crash zooms, focussed high-movement pans et al). Add that in with long, wider shots that play on with the depth-of-field to serve up two concurrently running story threads – be that for humor or for showing their cards at the right time – and you’ve gotten for yourself a suitably dynamic looking film. Serving it up all well-knit is James Herbert, whose mastery in continuity between two consecutive shots in a film. There are fantastic match cuts, hyperkinetic non-linear cuts and split-screen ellipses that – despite the lattermost’s irritable overuse – give you the definite impression of talent and potential being in the right place. The film’s production design is impressive, with each prop, every set and every costume being given the necessary attention-to-detail over. And top that over with Daniel Pemberton’s delicious score, peppered with the right soundtrack, handpicked by music supervisor Ian Neil (Kingsman: The Secret Service), and you’ve got yourself a technically commendable film alright.

To Perform or Not to Perform

Henry Cavill looks as sharp as he performs. Armie Hammer does a fine Russian for almost the whole film, not budging from his accent throughout the whole film – which is impressive. Alicia Vikander is almost brilliant – almost, for she does her confidence just right, save for the accent, which is definitely muddled and misplaced for her role, and should have been worked on (however, I suspect this might not have entirely been her fault, really). Hugh Grant (Cloud Atlas) does fantastically on his dry humor. Elizabeth Debicki is sharp; and by sharp, I mean sharp. Luca Calvani and Christian Berkel don’t have much to do. Sylvester Groth has his five minutes of checklist insanity, which he nails. The others are efficient.

Worth it?

This is going to be said outright: The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is not Guy Ritchie’s best, and definitely could have been much better, if not for the extremely heavy reliance on Ritchie’s trademark delicious visual style and narrative party-tricks in favor of a more coherent plot per se. That being said, it’s not a bad film by any means, and can definitely be checked out once, for the humor and the camaraderie the trio of Cavill, Hammer and Vikander share so effortlessly.

I’d go for a lazy weekend watch on the television with a bowl of popcorn on your side for effect, by the arrangement of which I definitely do intend that there might not be an event to miss if not watched. However, there’s still some fun to be had if you as a potential viewer have already decided to check this film out.

Consensus: 2.5 Stars
Comme ci, comme ça
About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

Watch the trailer

We’re viral

Like UsFollow Us


Rated

PG-13

Starring

Henry Cavill
Armie Hammer
Alicia Vikander
Hugh Grant
Elizabeth Debicki

Written by

Guy Ritchie
Lionel Wigram

Directed by

Guy Ritchie


What to Expect

A Guy Ritchie period spy-actioner.

That’s all you have to say when you witness the trailers of The Man from U. N. C. L. E., and that’s all you’re meant to know to expect nothing but the world out of the director who’s been made famous through such modern action classics like Snatch, Rock’n’Rolla and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

I, for one, have always felt that his most successful – and yet underrated – film was Revolver, which managed to boldly glide through concepts that were decisively subversive within the framework of the genre the movie was within. Extracting fantastic performances from the likes of currently generic performers like Ray Liotta and Jason Statham, the movie was as fascinating as it was frustrating (which was also, in turn, the very reason it was misunderstood).

But we’re not here to talk about the Ritchie of that phase (nor the one with Madonna where he decided to direct Swept Away for some rather unfathomable reason). We’re here to talk about the mainstream, post-Sherlock Holmes Ritchie, whose decisive stylistic tendencies might have worked for the first part of this remixed-from-Conan-Doyle franchise, but went overboard, relying heavily on style and the unmistakably nuanced chemistry and humor to take Game of Shadows forward. Not that the film was terrible; in fact, it was moderately enjoyable. but you’ve got to have a screenplay as heavy and dynamic to support all that glitziness, don’tcha?

And that’s the one very high skepticism that I’ve been keeping on the back of my head for U. N. C. L. E. Knowing, however, that Ritchie’s managed to have more rights in his kitty than wrongs, it would be quite difficult to be a complete skeptic and not have a single expectation of the film, now, would it?

What’s it About?

CIA agent Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill; Man of Steel) is forced to work alongwith Russian spy Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer; The Social Network) on a mission that (they hope) leads them to the mysterious disappearance of a scientist, tagging his daughter (Alicia Vikander; Ex Machina) along on the operation. What neither of them know is that the stakes are higher, and the job’s more sinister than is out in the open to them.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

ALICIA VIKANDER as Gaby in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2015 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC. AND RATPAC-DUNE ENTERTAINMENT LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

“If you like it then you shoulda put a tracker on it.”

The thing with Guy Ritchie movies in the mainstream environment is that the attention-to-detail within almost eighty percent of the film’s elements are pretty much on track. Add to that the rather stylishly shot action sequences and some fun narrative party-tricks, and you’re in for a jazzy summer-movie if you’ve gotten your popcorn with you. This film is filled with almost the same positives; except for there’s one small stickler: like Game of Shadows, The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is also unfortunately reliant heavily on trademark visual styles and narrative party-tricks at the cost of a coherent narrative.

That point’s definitely a debatable one, except for if you’re Ritchie and you’re directing a splendid team as the one here. With a cast as talented as Hammer, Cavill and Vikander, you’re meant to see a splendid narrative spliced with a story that’s meant to drive things forward. And for a film that’s supposed to be known for its action, there are just about two memorable action set-pieces that come to mind – the introductory and the penultimate, to name them specifically – the rest of which are mindless fillers in a story that’s stuck with some highly stylized narrative party-tricks that do well initially, but are repeated to a point where the effect is worn off, thereby rendering the impact nullified. There are couple of elliptical shots that are brought together by hyper-stylized split screen work, but there’s a point during the beginning of a later action set-piece where the whole razzmatazz is bitten off more than can be chewed.

Not that the film has no credit to it; there’s terrific humor in some pivotal scenes that are made to be remembered. A pastiche film that’s a subtly parodic throwback to spy films of yore, they’ve definitely gotten Cavill’s charming character just right. Cavill’s Napoleon seems to play off Armie’s Illya terrifically, giving them just the bouncy chemistry that their professional relationship – later giving way to a possibly quiet friendship – is able to provide. Vikander’s Gaby has a character that’s dynamic enough to serve up many a turn to the unwitting viewer. This in itself goes off really well and saves the film from being a complete hot mess that it could have been.

HENRY CAVILL as Solo in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2015 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC. AND RATPAC-DUNE ENTERTAINMENT LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Agent Swag

John Mathieson’s cinematography is sharp, and provides some delicious direction to the rather dynamic camerawork in quite the few set-pieces (crash zooms, focussed high-movement pans et al). Add that in with long, wider shots that play on with the depth-of-field to serve up two concurrently running story threads – be that for humor or for showing their cards at the right time – and you’ve gotten for yourself a suitably dynamic looking film. Serving it up all well-knit is James Herbert, whose mastery in continuity between two consecutive shots in a film. There are fantastic match cuts, hyperkinetic non-linear cuts and split-screen ellipses that – despite the lattermost’s irritable overuse – give you the definite impression of talent and potential being in the right place. The film’s production design is impressive, with each prop, every set and every costume being given the necessary attention-to-detail over. And top that over with Daniel Pemberton’s delicious score, peppered with the right soundtrack, handpicked by music supervisor Ian Neil (Kingsman: The Secret Service), and you’ve got yourself a technically commendable film alright.

To Perform or Not to Perform

Henry Cavill looks as sharp as he performs. Armie Hammer does a fine Russian for almost the whole film, not budging from his accent throughout the whole film – which is impressive. Alicia Vikander is almost brilliant – almost, for she does her confidence just right, save for the accent, which is definitely muddled and misplaced for her role, and should have been worked on (however, I suspect this might not have entirely been her fault, really). Hugh Grant (Cloud Atlas) does fantastically on his dry humor. Elizabeth Debicki is sharp; and by sharp, I mean sharp. Luca Calvani and Christian Berkel don’t have much to do. Sylvester Groth has his five minutes of checklist insanity, which he nails. The others are efficient.

Worth it?

This is going to be said outright: The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is not Guy Ritchie’s best, and definitely could have been much better, if not for the extremely heavy reliance on Ritchie’s trademark delicious visual style and narrative party-tricks in favor of a more coherent plot per se. That being said, it’s not a bad film by any means, and can definitely be checked out once, for the humor and the camaraderie the trio of Cavill, Hammer and Vikander share so effortlessly.

I’d go for a lazy weekend watch on the television with a bowl of popcorn on your side for effect, by the arrangement of which I definitely do intend that there might not be an event to miss if not watched. However, there’s still some fun to be had if you as a potential viewer have already decided to check this film out.

Consensus: 2.5 Stars
Comme ci, comme ça
About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

Watch the trailer

We’re viral

Like UsFollow Us

Cast Henry Cavill
Armie Hammer
Alicia Vikander
Director Guy Ritchie
Consensus: 2.5 Stars
Comme ci, comme ça

What to Expect

Cool Spy Stuff and Other Cool Things

Cool Spy Stuff and Other Cool Things

A Guy Ritchie period spy-actioner.

That’s all you have to say when you witness the trailers of The Man from U. N. C. L. E., and that’s all you’re meant to know to expect nothing but the world out of the director who’s been made famous through such modern action classics like Snatch, Rock’n’Rolla and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

I, for one, have always felt that his most successful – and yet underrated – film was Revolver, which managed to boldly glide through concepts that were decisively subversive within the framework of the genre the movie was within. Extracting fantastic performances from the likes of currently generic performers like Ray Liotta and Jason Statham, the movie was as fascinating as it was frustrating (which was also, in turn, the very reason it was misunderstood).

But we’re not here to talk about the Ritchie of that phase (nor the one with Madonna where he decided to direct Swept Away for some rather unfathomable reason). We’re here to talk about the mainstream, post-Sherlock Holmes Ritchie, whose decisive stylistic tendencies might have worked for the first part of this remixed-from-Conan-Doyle franchise, but went overboard, relying heavily on style and the unmistakably nuanced chemistry and humor to take Game of Shadows forward. Not that the film was terrible; in fact, it was moderately enjoyable. but you’ve got to have a screenplay as heavy and dynamic to support all that glitziness, don’tcha?

And that’s the one very high skepticism that I’ve been keeping on the back of my head for U. N. C. L. E. Knowing, however, that Ritchie’s managed to have more rights in his kitty than wrongs, it would be quite difficult to be a complete skeptic and not have a single expectation of the film, now, would it?

What’s it About?

CIA agent Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill; Man of Steel) is forced to work alongwith Russian spy Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer; The Social Network) on a mission that (they hope) leads them to the mysterious disappearance of a scientist, tagging his daughter (Alicia Vikander; Ex Machina) along on the operation. What neither of them know is that the stakes are higher, and the job’s more sinister than is out in the open to them.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

ALICIA VIKANDER as Gaby in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2015 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC. AND RATPAC-DUNE ENTERTAINMENT LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

“If you like it then you shoulda put a tracker on it.”

The thing with Guy Ritchie movies in the mainstream environment is that the attention-to-detail within almost eighty percent of the film’s elements are pretty much on track. Add to that the rather stylishly shot action sequences and some fun narrative party-tricks, and you’re in for a jazzy summer-movie if you’ve gotten your popcorn with you. This film is filled with almost the same positives; except for there’s one small stickler: like Game of Shadows, The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is also unfortunately reliant heavily on trademark visual styles and narrative party-tricks at the cost of a coherent narrative.

That point’s definitely a debatable one, except for if you’re Ritchie and you’re directing a splendid team as the one here. With a cast as talented as Hammer, Cavill and Vikander, you’re meant to see a splendid narrative spliced with a story that’s meant to drive things forward. And for a film that’s supposed to be known for its action, there are just about two memorable action set-pieces that come to mind – the introductory and the penultimate, to name them specifically – the rest of which are mindless fillers in a story that’s stuck with some highly stylized narrative party-tricks that do well initially, but are repeated to a point where the effect is worn off, thereby rendering the impact nullified. There are couple of elliptical shots that are brought together by hyper-stylized split screen work, but there’s a point during the beginning of a later action set-piece where the whole razzmatazz is bitten off more than can be chewed.

Not that the film has no credit to it; there’s terrific humor in some pivotal scenes that are made to be remembered. A pastiche film that’s a subtly parodic throwback to spy films of yore, they’ve definitely gotten Cavill’s charming character just right. Cavill’s Napoleon seems to play off Armie’s Illya terrifically, giving them just the bouncy chemistry that their professional relationship – later giving way to a possibly quiet friendship – is able to provide. Vikander’s Gaby has a character that’s dynamic enough to serve up many a turn to the unwitting viewer. This in itself goes off really well and saves the film from being a complete hot mess that it could have been.

HENRY CAVILL as Solo in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E.," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. © 2015 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC. AND RATPAC-DUNE ENTERTAINMENT LLC ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Agent Swag

John Mathieson’s cinematography is sharp, and provides some delicious direction to the rather dynamic camerawork in quite the few set-pieces (crash zooms, focussed high-movement pans et al). Add that in with long, wider shots that play on with the depth-of-field to serve up two concurrently running story threads – be that for humor or for showing their cards at the right time – and you’ve gotten for yourself a suitably dynamic looking film. Serving it up all well-knit is James Herbert, whose mastery in continuity between two consecutive shots in a film. There are fantastic match cuts, hyperkinetic non-linear cuts and split-screen ellipses that – despite the lattermost’s irritable overuse – give you the definite impression of talent and potential being in the right place. The film’s production design is impressive, with each prop, every set and every costume being given the necessary attention-to-detail over. And top that over with Daniel Pemberton’s delicious score, peppered with the right soundtrack, handpicked by music supervisor Ian Neil (Kingsman: The Secret Service), and you’ve got yourself a technically commendable film alright.

To Perform or Not to Perform

Henry Cavill looks as sharp as he performs. Armie Hammer does a fine Russian for almost the whole film, not budging from his accent throughout the whole film – which is impressive. Alicia Vikander is almost brilliant – almost, for she does her confidence just right, save for the accent, which is definitely muddled and misplaced for her role, and should have been worked on (however, I suspect this might not have entirely been her fault, really). Hugh Grant (Cloud Atlas) does fantastically on his dry humor. Elizabeth Debicki is sharp; and by sharp, I mean sharp. Luca Calvani and Christian Berkel don’t have much to do. Sylvester Groth has his five minutes of checklist insanity, which he nails. The others are efficient.

Worth it?

This is going to be said outright: The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is not Guy Ritchie’s best, and definitely could have been much better, if not for the extremely heavy reliance on Ritchie’s trademark delicious visual style and narrative party-tricks in favor of a more coherent plot per se. That being said, it’s not a bad film by any means, and can definitely be checked out once, for the humor and the camaraderie the trio of Cavill, Hammer and Vikander share so effortlessly.

I’d go for a lazy weekend watch on the television with a bowl of popcorn on your side for effect, by the arrangement of which I definitely do intend that there might not be an event to miss if not watched. However, there’s still some fun to be had if you as a potential viewer have already decided to check this film out.

About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

We’re viral

Like usFollow us
Cast Henry Cavill
Armie Hammer
Alicia Vikander
Director Guy Ritchie
Consensus: 2.5 Stars
Comme ci, comme ça

What to Expect

A Guy Ritchie period spy-actioner.

That’s all you have to say when you witness the trailers of The Man from U. N. C. L. E., and that’s all you’re meant to know to expect nothing but the world out of the director who’s been made famous through such modern action classics like Snatch, Rock’n’Rolla and Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

I, for one, have always felt that his most successful – and yet underrated – film was Revolver, which managed to boldly glide through concepts that were decisively subversive within the framework of the genre the movie was within. Extracting fantastic performances from the likes of currently generic performers like Ray Liotta and Jason Statham, the movie was as fascinating as it was frustrating (which was also, in turn, the very reason it was misunderstood).

But we’re not here to talk about the Ritchie of that phase (nor the one with Madonna where he decided to direct Swept Away for some rather unfathomable reason). We’re here to talk about the mainstream, post-Sherlock Holmes Ritchie, whose decisive stylistic tendencies might have worked for the first part of this remixed-from-Conan-Doyle franchise, but went overboard, relying heavily on style and the unmistakably nuanced chemistry and humor to take Game of Shadows forward. Not that the film was terrible; in fact, it was moderately enjoyable. but you’ve got to have a screenplay as heavy and dynamic to support all that glitziness, don’tcha?

And that’s the one very high skepticism that I’ve been keeping on the back of my head for U. N. C. L. E. Knowing, however, that Ritchie’s managed to have more rights in his kitty than wrongs, it would be quite difficult to be a complete skeptic and not have a single expectation of the film, now, would it?

What’s it About?

CIA agent Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill; Man of Steel) is forced to work alongwith Russian spy Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer; The Social Network) on a mission that (they hope) leads them to the mysterious disappearance of a scientist, tagging his daughter (Alicia Vikander; Ex Machina) along on the operation. What neither of them know is that the stakes are higher, and the job’s more sinister than is out in the open to them.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The thing with Guy Ritchie movies in the mainstream environment is that the attention-to-detail within almost eighty percent of the film’s elements are pretty much on track. Add to that the rather stylishly shot action sequences and some fun narrative party-tricks, and you’re in for a jazzy summer-movie if you’ve gotten your popcorn with you. This film is filled with almost the same positives; except for there’s one small stickler: like Game of Shadows, The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is also unfortunately reliant heavily on trademark visual styles and narrative party-tricks at the cost of a coherent narrative.

That point’s definitely a debatable one, except for if you’re Ritchie and you’re directing a splendid team as the one here. With a cast as talented as Hammer, Cavill and Vikander, you’re meant to see a splendid narrative spliced with a story that’s meant to drive things forward. And for a film that’s supposed to be known for its action, there are just about two memorable action set-pieces that come to mind – the introductory and the penultimate, to name them specifically – the rest of which are mindless fillers in a story that’s stuck with some highly stylized narrative party-tricks that do well initially, but are repeated to a point where the effect is worn off, thereby rendering the impact nullified. There are couple of elliptical shots that are brought together by hyper-stylized split screen work, but there’s a point during the beginning of a later action set-piece where the whole razzmatazz is bitten off more than can be chewed.

Not that the film has no credit to it; there’s terrific humor in some pivotal scenes that are made to be remembered. A pastiche film that’s a subtly parodic throwback to spy films of yore, they’ve definitely gotten Cavill’s charming character just right. Cavill’s Napoleon seems to play off Armie’s Illya terrifically, giving them just the bouncy chemistry that their professional relationship – later giving way to a possibly quiet friendship – is able to provide. Vikander’s Gaby has a character that’s dynamic enough to serve up many a turn to the unwitting viewer. This in itself goes off really well and saves the film from being a complete hot mess that it could have been.

John Mathieson’s cinematography is sharp, and provides some delicious direction to the rather dynamic camerawork in quite the few set-pieces (crash zooms, focussed high-movement pans et al). Add that in with long, wider shots that play on with the depth-of-field to serve up two concurrently running story threads – be that for humor or for showing their cards at the right time – and you’ve gotten for yourself a suitably dynamic looking film. Serving it up all well-knit is James Herbert, whose mastery in continuity between two consecutive shots in a film. There are fantastic match cuts, hyperkinetic non-linear cuts and split-screen ellipses that – despite the lattermost’s irritable overuse – give you the definite impression of talent and potential being in the right place. The film’s production design is impressive, with each prop, every set and every costume being given the necessary attention-to-detail over. And top that over with Daniel Pemberton’s delicious score, peppered with the right soundtrack, handpicked by music supervisor Ian Neil (Kingsman: The Secret Service), and you’ve got yourself a technically commendable film alright.

Agent Swag

To Perform or Not to Perform

Henry Cavill looks as sharp as he performs. Armie Hammer does a fine Russian for almost the whole film, not budging from his accent throughout the whole film – which is impressive. Alicia Vikander is almost brilliant – almost, for she does her confidence just right, save for the accent, which is definitely muddled and misplaced for her role, and should have been worked on (however, I suspect this might not have entirely been her fault, really). Hugh Grant (Cloud Atlas) does fantastically on his dry humor. Elizabeth Debicki is sharp; and by sharp, I mean sharp. Luca Calvani and Christian Berkel don’t have much to do. Sylvester Groth has his five minutes of checklist insanity, which he nails. The others are efficient.

Worth it?

This is going to be said outright: The Man from U. N. C. L. E. is not Guy Ritchie’s best, and definitely could have been much better, if not for the extremely heavy reliance on Ritchie’s trademark delicious visual style and narrative party-tricks in favor of a more coherent plot per se. That being said, it’s not a bad film by any means, and can definitely be checked out once, for the humor and the camaraderie the trio of Cavill, Hammer and Vikander share so effortlessly.

I’d go for a lazy weekend watch on the television with a bowl of popcorn on your side for effect, by the arrangement of which I definitely do intend that there might not be an event to miss if not watched. However, there’s still some fun to be had if you as a potential viewer have already decided to check this film out.

About the Author

Ankit Ojha

Facebook

Ambivert. Intermittent cynic. Content creator. New media enthusiast. Binge-watcher. Budding filmmaker.

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