Life can be stranger than fiction, but what happens when those lines blur? Some have accused Matt Groening, creator of The Simpsons, of being a time traveler because some of the things that have been portrayed on the show have actually happened. I am sure this is coincidence, and there is something similar going on with Argylle.
Matthew Vaughn (Kingsman: The Secret Service) is back with this new film that stars Bryce Dallas Howard, Sam Rockwell, John Cena, Samuel L. Jackson, Bryan Cranston and Catherine O’Hara. Ally Conway (Howard) is the reclusive novelist of a popular spy novel series who is struggling to finish the story’s final novel. Out of the blue, she meets a man named Aidan (Rockwell) who claims to be a spy and tells her that the things in her books are happening in real-life. Once she finds this out, she finds herself drawn into the world of worldwide espionage in an adventure that blurs the line between reality and what she knows is fiction.
Obviously, this is not the kind of film made with year-end nominations in mind, but the cast here is very good with a number of veteran actors who perform at the levels that you expect from past roles (Howard specifically). I was also impressed with the visuals here as a film that takes place on multiple continents, and does so beautifully.
Argylle is roughly two hours and twenty minutes long, and really does not feel it. If there was anything in this film that I would have changed, I would have maybe made the film about ten minutes shorter, but that is also nitpicking a bit. Keep in mind that Matthew Vaughn directed this film, and most of his films are in the same general time length. The script did keep me interested, and even features some fun twists and turns. The actions sequences are done well, enhanced by solid editing, which is another thing Vaughan is known for. The comedic moments were done with the right mix of story and action, even with some very interesting details that help it all come together by the time the credits rolled. If you like films like The Hitman’s Bodyguard, this is a good one to put on your must-watch list, and there is even a chance it may make my year end best Top Ten list. Currently, this is my favorite film of the year and it gets my “coveted” recommendation of full-price at the theaters.