Lorraine (Charlize Theron) is an undercover MI6 agent sent to Berlin during the Cold War to investigate the death of another agent and recover a list unveiling double agents.
Atomic Blonde is everything you’d expect from the director of John Wick. The action is visceral and as violent as you could imagine. Some of the sequences here are mind boggling. You find yourself thinking this scene is about to wind down and it’s still going with the same intensity as it started with. David Leitch directed an action packed film, with vivid visuals and some of the most unique lighting you’ll see this year. It was a joy to watch.
Charlize Theron is fantastic as Lorraine. She’s so bad ass. I couldn’t picture anyone else in this role. Theron owned every moment she was on screen. She was charismatic and suave like Bond, but an unapologetic ass kicker like John Wick. Theron is magnetic, the most she’s been in awhile. I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen. Her performance with Leitch’s direction made for a compelling action movie.
This supporting cast crushes it as well. James McAvoy plays David Percivil, who Lorraine meets upon her arrival in Berlin. They have good chemistry. The banter back and forth was fun. Percivil’s more over the top humor with Lorraine’s dry wit played well together. Sofia Boutella was great too. There’s something about her that brings you in. When she pops up here you’re just hanging on every word. Her wide eyed innocence is used well to help humanize Lorraine. She served that purpose well and I believed her. You believe that she’s just caught in the crossfire and it’s not a place she thrives in like Lorraine.
Where Atomic Blonde falls a little flat is the story. When there isn’t a lot of action on the screen, you frankly don’t care as much as you should. You’re invested because you’re watching Charlize, but you aren’t invested in what she’s doing when it’s not kicking ass. This story doesn’t hook you the way it should. Also, the film goes back and forth in this interrogation scene and back to the events leading to it. This setting just didn’t help the movie at all. I feel like it could’ve been taken out and it would’ve played out exactly the same. The pacing doesn’t lead to a smooth ride either. It feels like a bunch of starts and screeching halts.
Atomic Blonde is a good action film. The sequences here are mind blowing. Some of the stuff in between may not be the best, but the action is so good that it out weighs the negatives the movie has.