“There are only two masters in this world: fear and pain.”
– Uncle Rudi
SYNOPSIS: In the 1960s with the Cold War in play, CIA agent Napoleon Solo successfully helps Gaby Teller defect to West Germany despite the intimidating opposition of KGB agent Illya Kuryakin. Later, all three unexpectedly find themselves working together in a joint mission to stop a private criminal organization from using Gaby’s father’s scientific expertise to construct their own nuclear bomb. Through clenched teeth and stylish poise, all three must find a way to cooperate for the sake of world peace, even as they each pursue their own agendas. – via IMDB
Ah, this! This was incredibly entertaining! I expected to enjoy it because it looked really good, plus Henry Cavill (I mean seriously now, as if Guy Ritchie’s name wasn’t draw enough), and because of the era. I am fascinated by the WWII era and the Cold War aftermath. This movie was so much more than I was hoping it would be.
Let’s start with Henry Cavill’s Napoleon Solo and Armie Hammer’s Illya Kuryakin. The two worked together phenomenally – so much great chemistry there and they dominated every time they were together on screen. Their constant one-upmanship and little skirmishes were dead entertaining, and how they are similar and yet polar opposites of one another never ceased to entertain me. Solo just oozes charm and is suave, collected and very slick, whereas Illya has a volatile temper that can barely be kept in check, and is so patriotic you cannot help but smile and definitely has quite a set of morals set in stone.
The Man From U.N.C.L.E. is stylish to boot, and it looks amazing. I mean all of it. The outfits were fantastic and Cavill and Hammer were simply delicious, not to mention Vikander thrown into the mix, too. I was a big fan of the way that the whole arms race of the Cold War was not forgotten, as Solo and Kuryakin constantly throw their respective technology in on another’s faces the whole time as being more superior to the other’s. Each has something that is better, and it is hilarious to see this. I like how those little things were brought in. They were at odds the whole way through. A particular scene that I enjoyed involved a motorboat and a picnic – it was brilliant!
Alicia Vikander was, again, worth a watch, and I really did like to see how she and Armie played off of one another – awkward when necessary, just a little haughty, undoubtedly attracted to each other, it just worked so well. Really good chemistry. In fact, they drove me mad at the best of times. The cast was actually exceptionally good for the film. The story is simple, no super fancy frills and not nearly as complicated as other Ritchie plots are known to be, but it was fun and simple and came together nicely. I know that the movie brings nothing new to the table, I know that it isn’t revolutionary or anything like that, but it is fun, and it is entertaining, and it is well worth a watch, just once at least. If you nitpick and expect something super serious, you are likely going to miss what makes this a simple joy to watch.