By Ryan Keating-Lambert
Charlize Theron is a formidable on screen presence in this wonderfully entertaining and state of the art fight film from the director of John Wick.
It’s 1989 and MI6 agent Lorainne Broughton (Theron) is sent to Berlin to investigate the murder of a fellow agent, and to recover a top secret list.
Atomic Blonde is your standard ‘double agent, double crossing Cold War spy movie’ plot, that escalates into a colourful and intense final act. It’s executed with gracious precision from its talented cast including both Theron and James McAvoy as her Berlin partner agent David Percival, who both must have walked away from this project with brusies on every single inch of their perfect bodies.
The fight scenes, like in director David Leitch’s John Wick, are fantastically executed and choreographed, and almost like a whole other character in themselves. There’s a particularly memorable one with Broughton escorting a ‘package’ to safety – mesmerising and ball-busting. The state of Broughton’s bloody face afterwards is actually quite shocking, and yet so refreshing. Leitch isn’t afraid to show the brute force that this woman can take, not to mention administer.
Also like John Wick, the stunning fight choreography is bathed in Leitch’s trademark neon. Every bar and every Stoli on ice in Atomic Blonde oozes 1980s realness, matched only by its insanely fun soundtrack. New Order’s ‘Blue Monday’, an essential dance track for everyone at one point or another, will surely find its way back onto your Spotify playlist once again.
It is a pity though, that the film didn’t allow for more of a part for Sofia Boutella as French operative Delphine Lasalle. The Kingsman actress has an impressive action / adventure resume and it would have been more convincing to see her pack a bit of punch rather than just be a minor plot device.
Overall, it’s a mixture of fight and good light, with a dash of spy movie. Atomic Blonde is an absolute must this summer. With this and 2015’s Max Max: Fury Road under her belt, Charlize Theron proves that she is truly the bloody tough queen of action films.
Photo: Film Jabber