There are lots of comic book movies, sequels, remakes, reboots, and book adaption’s these days, that sometimes it’s hard to even know what is an ‘original’ piece of cinema. On top of that, there are the TV show remakes, but not remaking for TV, instead turning the TV format of a show that may have run for many years, and turning the concept into a 90 minute theatrical spectacle. Like with all the kinds of films I’ve already mentioned, there is a risk involved that these new versions are never as good as the source material, and TV show remakes may be one of the most risky ventures of all.
Having said that though, The Man From U.N.C.L.E. was a TV show from the 60’s, and I actually know nothing about it, and when you don’t know the source material, in a way, the remake gets a free pass from the criticism that might come along with it not being as good as what it’s based off. Similar to a book adaption if you haven’t read the book. The trailer for the film looked just ok, but with Guy Ritchie both writing and directing the film, meant I thought it should be pretty good despite the lacklustre trailer, as Lock Stock, Snatch, and his other films are all awesome.
This is maybe the most non Guy Ritchie film I’ve seen, except for Swept Away, which I have neither seen, and most likely never will. His usual flair and style felt like it was held back throughout, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as this film was a period film grounded in a real world reality. It was a pretty slow paced spy action, though not Tinker Tailor slow, but it wasn’t on the same level as a Bond or Mission Impossible action either.
It took maybe half the film for me to really get into the story, but that’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it up to that point. It was funny, slick, and grounded in realism which I really liked, as it felt every gadget they used in the film would have been exactly what spies would have had at that time in history. So though not my favourite Ritchie film, it was still a fun ride, and with the set up for sequels, I hope to see where they take the series.
8 out of 10 from me!!!