Released on Netflix
Red Notice sees Dwayne Johnson play FBI’s top profiler John Hartley who finds himself forced to partner up with Ryan Reynolds’ Nolan Booth, the world’s greatest art thief, in order to catch the world’s most wanted art thief, Gal Gadot’s “The Bishop.” A daring heist takes the trio into a global pursuit for three golden eggs created by Marc Anthony for his love Cleopatra. The third golden egg is missing, its location unknown. Fortunately, Nolan Booth is the only one who knows how to find it.
With reportedly a $200 million budget, and three stars from the franchise world, Red Notice was always going to be a hit on Netflix. According to Ryan Reynolds, the movie had Netflix’s biggest ever opening day. Although a fun watch, everything in this movie though feels too calculated. The movie has been heavily panned by critics, scoring a 39% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Writer and director Rawson Marshall Thurber was clearly inspired by Indiana Jones, especially Raiders of the Lost Ark, when coming up with Red Notice. The opening sequence of the movie sees FBI profiler John Hartley arriving at a museum in Rome which holds one of Cleopatra’s golden eggs with Interpol. Hartley believes the notorious art thief Nolan Booth will attempt to steal the egg. As it turns out, he is right. A long chase scene with plenty of cinematic stunts ensues.
When Interpol Inspector Urvashi Das (played by Ritu Arya) believes John Hartley was in on the heist, she arrests him and puts him in the same prison as Booth. In this high security prison (on top of a mountain), the two partner up to escape prison, and catch the thief that set them up, nicknamed “The Bishop.” In order to do so, they must find Cleopatra’s missing third golden egg.
This is the perfect movie to watch if you’re wanting to disconnect from your day-to-day life, without having to think too much. This is an entertaining movie that invites you on a ride and asks you to not think too much, if at all, about which direction it is taking, or how and why. You know, anyway, where it is going. Everything seems to happen implicitly in the movie. Booth just happens to know how to fly a helicopter, just as one example out of many. Every twist (and double, triple twist), the movie offers is somehow predictable. The movie offers no real surprise. It’s a ride we’ve been on so many times that nothing surprises us anymore. It feels almost like a parody of heist movies, in which everything always fits neatly into place.
With your mind switched off, the only thing left to really appreciate is the actors’ performances. The whole film’s success is really dependent on the chemistry between Dwayne Johnson, Ryan Reynolds and Gal Gadot. Johnson plays the same sort of character he always plays, Reynolds throws witty jokes, which increasingly are reminiscent of his Deadpool character, while Gal Gadot sports different glamorous outfits. There is a kind of chemistry between Johnson and Reynolds, but their banter feels very scripted and familiar. Gal Gadot, however great she is as The Bishop, feels more like a third wheel in this movie that should be a trio rather than a duet.
All this said, Red Notice is an entertaining movie that is clearly becoming Netflix’s big movie hit this weekend.
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