Atomic Blonde (2017)
Directed by: David Leitch
Written by: Kurt Johnstad
Starring: Charlize Theron, James McAvoy, John Goodman, Sofia Boutell, Eddie Marzan, Roland Moller
Buckle up, Friends! Atomic Blonde hits theaters this weekend and it hits hard!! Are you an action movie fan? You’ll love it. Do you enjoy films with a strong female lead? This is for you. Perhaps you can’t get enough of movies based on comics and graphic novels? Done! You love all things 80’s? Check! Perhaps you just enjoy spy movies with a bit of a twist at the end. Again… you’re covered. Of all of the summer releases so far this year (and we’ve had some doozies), ‘Atomic Blonde’, for my money, may be the best one yet! Set against the backdrop of Berlin during the final days of the Cold War, this highly stylized and masterfully shot film stars Charlize Theron as MI6 Agent Lorraine Broughton who is tasked to bring back the body of a fellow agent and complete his assignment by getting a microfilm that could tip the balance of world power.
Throughout the movie, there is the typical spy fare including double agents, car chases, dizzying fights, glamorous settings, and action aplenty. James McAvoy is lovably despicable as the Berlin station chief who uses his position to further his own desires and goals. It’s always a delight to see Sofia Boutella on screen and she perfectly plays the still somewhat green French agent assigned to Berlin. The cast is rounded out by the always outstanding John Goodman as CIA liaison Emmett Kurzfeld, Eddie Marzan as Spyglass, Toby Jones as MI6 head Eric Gray and Roland Moller as KGB chief Aleksander Bremovych. Beautifully filmed by director David Leitch, ‘Atomic Blonde’ is a slick and stylized roundhouse kick to your senses. The soundtrack featuring such 80’s gems as “Voices Carry“, “Under Pressure“, “Der Kommissar” and “99 Luftballons” fit seamlessly into the action and help propel the film’s 1 hr 55 min run time along at an effortless pace. Speaking of effortless – Charlize Theron makes the incredibly choreographed and downright brutal fight scenes look like a perfectly practiced dance from which even Jason Bourne could learn a thing or two.
The casting of this movie couldn’t have been better and Charlize Theron demonstrates, yet again, how suited she is for playing the role of a total badass. I can only imagine the delight from Antony Johnston and Sam Hart (who created the graphic novel “The Coldest City” on which the film is based) when it was announced that Charlize would be playing the lead role. As a fan of all things 80’s, the movie was a delight for me and I probably would have reviewed the film favorably just on those merits. The fact that it was breathtakingly beautiful, brilliantly acted and buoyantly fun means that I cannot, in good conscience, rate ‘Atomic Blonde’ anything less than a 9.5 with a half point taken off for some incredibly slight cliche tropes of the spy genre. If you are wanting to see some exciting thrills this weekend on the big screen, then ‘Atomic Blonde’ is just the woman for you!