DIRECTOR: Ang lee (life of pi, crouching tiger, hidden dragon, brokeback mountain)
starring: will smith, mary elizabeth winstead, benedict wong, and clive owen
REVIEWER: lyall carter
An over-the-hill hitman faces off against a younger clone of himself.
Was it just me or did it seem like Will Smith seemed to disappear for a little while? Every summer while I was growing up he seemed to be in some sorta blockbuster film but the last couple of years it didn't seem like he was around much. Now with his stint as the Genie in the live action Aladdin under his belt, Will Smith is back with the action packed Gemini Man. And another Will Smith.
Henry Brogan is an elite assassin who becomes the target of a mysterious operative who can seemingly predict his every move. To his horror, he soon learns that the man who's trying to kill him is a younger, faster, cloned version of himself.
Theres no getting around it: Gemini Man is your typical action, thriller, spy fare. There is a good guy who gets set up by his own 'side' and must discover who has turned against him and get to the heart of the conspiracy that threatens the known world. Very Bourne, John Le Carre, even Bond-esque.
From a director with the width, breadth, and depth of a filmography as Ang Lee you may expect a film with a little more originality. But originality doesn't necessarily make a film's plot good. Gemini Man has a solid, action packed story packed with likeable characters and cracking action.
Now we come to the CGI; Brogan's clone, the other Will Smith. Its good. Not brilliant, but good. There are some shots that are breathtakingly real, but others that are so bad that they look like they've been taken straight from the Independence Day Playstation game. I think what makes matters worst is that this is the first time, that I can remember, that you have a real, living, breathing actor playing opposite his CGI younger, self. It can be a bit jarring for the audience when you've got the real thing right in front of you to compare.
In Gemini Man you're reminded once again why Will Smith is such a superstar. He's suave, got great banter, is great in a scrap, and looks super cool running. He carries and holds this movie together. Big Willie is back!
While Gemini Man won't gain cult classic status, its a solid action spy thriller with quick fire action, great banter, and not one but two Will Smiths. What more could you possibly want?