Dwayne Johnson in the jungle Part 27
By Sadira Sittampalam
Red Notice is a film starring Dwayne Johnson, Ryan Reynolds and Gal Gadot. There are a lot of assumptions you could stand to make knowing this information, and I’m sure most of those assumptions are accurate as this is a movie less about being a movie and more about the three main leads. The director knows what mass audiences want to see and therefore plays all the standard cards.
Thus, while the plot is practically irrelevant to this review and to the movie itself, I will still describe the basic set-up. Red Notice is set in the world of international crime, where an Interpol agent attempts to hunt down two of the world’s best rival art thieves. While I found the entire movie to be very conventional, boring and tasteless, I’m sure there are plenty of people around the world that will enjoy this movie, simply because they like the actors and their dynamics.
This movie really is about mindless popcorn fun and while there is nothing wrong with some good old family-friendly humour and adventure, there is nothing impressive about it. The story was just incredibly convoluted for no real reason and looking back, it really didn’t make too much sense either. To be completely fair, there are plenty of movies that make no sense but can still be enjoyed courtesy the mindless entertainment it provides, but this movie just took itself way too seriously, giving us endless expositional jargon and badly choreographed action sequences that made it palatably boring.
For a movie with a budget of $200 million, I really expected a lot more from it. It was actually impressive how much this budget was squandered as this was something that was supposed to be a globe-trotting adventure movie when it actually turned out to look like a B movie from the 2000s with its terribly obvious sets, green screen and second unit shots. While this may be excused because of COVID-19 as it did delay the production, I still found the entire thing to be one of the most underwhelming movies in terms of location, with the sets themselves being so uninspired.
Comparatively, Dune was a movie with a budget of $165 million, and it managed to look leagues better than this movie.
All the action scenes were banal and un-engaging, full of unnecessary cuts and choppy editing. I genuinely just don’t know how anyone can sit through some of these scenes as they are just lifeless and unimaginative. In a certain scene, I couldn’t even follow the action because the scene was too dark and the editing was so disorienting. It wasn’t presented in a way where I couldn’t understand the dynamics of the scene, which is pretty much the bare minimum of what you’d expect an action movie to deliver.
While this movie was a good two hours, I would be hard-pressed to tell you the main three character names. This is because there was practically no distinction between the actors and the characters, as all three of the main leads did what they do best; be themselves. And this worked to a certain extent as Johnson does play the straight man very well, and Reynolds plays the sarcastic, witty, one liner guy well, while Gadot just had to be charming and charismatic.
It's not like these performances are anything to talk about, but they certainly filled the roles that they needed to in a way that was appropriate for this movie. However, since I am pretty familiar with all these actors and their brand of comedy, all their jokes also felt very old and predictable. Maybe every one in 10 jokes landed, which, to be fair, is more than I expec ted. The soundtrack was also the bare minimum and could have very well been some copyright-free music that they got off the internet, as it was just that generic.
Overall, I am never going to watch this movie again, and I regret watching it even the one time I did, as it was a waste of time and money. However, anyone who likes the three leads will probably have a good time watching this movie and enjoying it for the mindless entertainment that it is. There was just nothing original about this movie and you can tell this movie is very much a blatant cash grab using the three headliners as bait for anyone willing to bite.