Rating : 4/10
Release Date : 29th August, 2014
Time : 108 minutes
Director: Roger Donalson; Writers : Michael Finch, Karl Gajdusek, based on Bill Granger’s book “There Are No Spies”; Music : Marco Beltrami
Starring : Pierce Brosnan, Olga Kurylenko, Luke Bracey,Bill Smitrovich, Lazar Ristovski, Will Patton, Mediha Musliovic
An ageing Pierce Brosnan is unable to convince us that he could still pass off as a Bond style secret agent, who comes out of his retirement for one last assignment. A wafer thin plot, full of more holes than Rahul Gandhi’s election strategy, borders on the ridiculous at times, and is only given a tinge of seriousness by Luke Bracey’s menacing presence.
Everyone seems to have a secret in this one. A Russian general, Lazar Ristovski, on the brink of becoming the President, has one. The CIA head of the Belgrade office, Bill Smitrovich also has one. Even Pierce Brosnan, who retired from active service, has one. And everyone is after Mediha, who wants to reveal Lazar’s secret, with Olga, an aid worker in Belgrade, turning out to be a key person as well.
I think I’ve reached the point, where political conspiracy films rarely shock me anymore. Most revelations barely making me, like Jeeves, raise my eyebrow by a miniscule millimeter. In this film, I doubt if any of the spilt secrets would even induce a yawn in anyone. Would, after what’s happened in Afghanistan, Pakistan Iran, Iraq, Syria, Palestine, the fact that the CIA helped foment a war, with a power hungry General in a former Soviet nation, come as a surprise to anyone ?
Also, imagine the same General, now also a Presidential candidate, staying in a hotel in Belgrade for a major energy summit. Protected only by 4 guards. Whom Pierce Brosnan casually walks up and shoots. With a gun without a silencer. Then proceeds to interrogate the General in his room. Without being disturbed by anyone –hotel security / cops / no one. Then CIA operatives brandishing guns run inside the same hotel. Again, are stopped by no one, no alarms are raised. And proceed to have another gun battle with Pierce. Again, without anyone interfering. I mean, I know he’s a former James Bond, but don’t you give up your license to kill when you retire from the role ?
Pierce’s big secret too, buried from his employers (including close friends in the agency) for over 20 years, is discovered within a few minutes, from, don’t hold your breath, file photographs, which were on record. Its just all too easy, too convenient and much ado about nothing.
The locations are nice. Olga looks great, especially when she walks into the hotel wearing a dress that does full justice to her lovely long legs, but seems uncomfortable in the scenes which require her to emote. Luke, playing Pierce’s protégé in the CIA, is the only one who actually fits his role perfectly – ice cold, menacing, with a bee in his bonnet to prove that the student has surpassed the teacher. Wish that was what the movie was actually about rather than the rather convoluted plot they actually came up with. It even sorely lacks the sense of humour, one liners that made Pierce so devastatingly good in most of his other films. This one unfortunately just doesn’t work in any month…November or otherwise…