2017-08-29

starlady: Mako's face in the jaeger, in profile (mako mori is awesome)
2017-08-29 09:48 pm
Entry tags:

Atomic Blonde (2017) and The Dark Tower (2017)

Atomic Blonde (2017), dir. David Leitch
I fully support Charlize Theron's decision to transform into an action star as her mid-career reinvention. Set in Berlin during the literal last days before the fall of the Wall, Theron plays a British spy tasked with flying in to recover "the list" (spy movies need to stop using this MacGuffin, and someday they will, but not today) of covert agents and figure out which agent in Berlin has betrayed their country. Smart money is on James McAvoy, playing the MI6 Berlin station chief in full-on dirty mode, but much more charmingly than in Filth. I was in Berlin last October, which leant a vertiginous quality to the whole affair; much of the movie is quite accurate about getting between the two cities, etc, and it feels like Berlin still does, a little, even now. Everyone is excellent and the fight scenes, eschewing the Bond films' PG-13 rating for a well-earned R, are realistic and tense. The soundtrack is great too, though if anything, it was edging slightly close to being too on the nose at times; this was saved mostly by the many German covers of 80s standards. There is also canon queerness, for an even better bonus, and I am definitely going to watch it again. Has anyone read the graphic novel it's based on?

The Dark Tower (2017), dir. Nikolaj Arcel
My brother and I went to see this because Idris Elba and…it's not good. I don't think it was quite as bad as it was made out to be, but it's certainly the case that less than 12 hours after I walked out of the theater the only thing that stuck with me was Matthew McConnaughey saying "magics" with absolutely zero conviction. The posters were more epic than the actual film, alas. I still maintain that they should have made Jake a girl (heresy, I know), but the film had bigger problems. Stephen King apparently signed off on it, though, which suggests an inherent problem in his standards for adaptations of his books.