Bryce Dallas Howard, Sam Rockwell, Henry Cavill, John Cena, Dua Lipa, Bryan Cranston, Sofia Boutella, Ariana DeBose, Catherine O'Hara, Samuel L. Jackson DIRECTED BY
Matthew Vaughn SCREENPLAY
Jason Fuchs MPAA RATING
Rated PG-13 RUNNING TIME
133 Mins. DISTRIBUTED BY
Apple TV+ OFFICIAL IMDB
Movie Review: Argylle
There's something fun about writing the review for a really crappy film.
There's also something really inspiring about writing the review for a truly great film.
It's the "meh" films that baffle me. Matthew Vaughn's Argylle is a meh film. The film centers around Elly (Bryce Dallas Howard), an introverted author of spy novels centered around an agent named Argylle (Henry Caville) whose books have somehow become so accurate that they're now predicting global spy events. This attracts the attention of just about, well, everyone and it's only her and a spy named Aidan (Sam Rockwell) who can possibly save her while everyone tries to get their hands on her next novel.
Somehow, this storyline justified a rumored $200 million budget (though Vaughn has stated it is less).
Say "bye-bye" to the cash Apple.
To be completely fair, there are some impressive action sequences to be found in Argylle and there's an impressive ensemble waiting around for the film they likely thought they signed up for to actually manifest. In addition to our leading trio, familiar faces like Catherine O'Hara, Samuel L. Jackson, John Cena, and Bryan Cranston are all here and obviously game for a good time. O'Hara is the film's highlight Elly's mom. She captures a tone that I wish everyone else had followed, an inspired performance lost in a sea of bloated nothingness.
The script by Jason Fuchs is trying way too hard with relentless twists and turns along the way and double-crosses galore. Let's just say that John Wick isn't looking over his should worried about this cinematic drivel. The film lasts at least 30 minutes longer than it needs to be, though I suppose if you're going to make a mega-budgeted film you probably have to show something big on that big screen.
Listen, there's no denying that Matthew Vaughn is a talented director. However, Argylle simply isn't a good film and it's barely a competent one. Here's hoping that Argylle is Vaughn's cinematic lowpoint and he can get back to making stylish, substantial motion pictures that are actually fun to watch.