The Gray Man follows Court Gentry aka Sierra Six (Ryan Gosling), who is learning his true place within the CIA Sierra program. With the help of Sierra’s former head, Donald Fitzroy Billy Bob Thornton), and Gentry’s side agent, Dani Miranda (Ana de Armas), they take on antagonists, Denny Carmichael (Rege Jean Page) and Lloyd Hansen (Chris Evans), who are looking to exterminate the Sierra program and its members.
Gosling continues to be the classic dashing, handsome and tough leading man. He’s chiselled in all the right places which cuts, bruises and bullet wounds only highlight. Gosling tries to be sarcastic and joke with every character around him and this is showcased in his relationship with Billy Bob Thornton as Gosling views him as a father figure after leaving his old life for the CIA. Sadly, that’s where my love for Gosling ends in this movie, his character does not get the fleshed out personal or emotional storyline he needs to match his high life as a CIA spy. Instead, directors, the Russo Brothers, rely on his good looks and fighting to tell his story.
Chris Evans is the real shining star throughout the movie. We all know and love him as the ultimate good guy Captain America from the Marvel movies. Seeing him as a villain now just projects the range and experience he has for acting. Like his character in Knives Out, Ransom, the character Lloyd Hansen is a rich and suave bad boy who puts style and class into every aspect of being a private killer. He also does not care about the people around him to get and do whatever he pleases, and yes this includes murder.
Evans performance is the only positive thing I have to say about this film though as although the male actors did a good job with their performances, their characters just seemed too pretentious and annoying to watch including our protagonist, Sierra Six. This isn’t a reflection of their acting, rather the people behind the scenes such as the directors and script writers who forgot to draw out characters properly and make their storylines smooth and effortless.
The male characters are also rude and highly patronizing to their female counterparts, they only use women for their benefit and forget about them when they believe there is no use for them anymore. I myself found I was missing the female characters when they weren’t in the scene. Dani and Claire (Julia Butters) are given little do except make character’s like Gosling’s look better. I found this almost shameful as Armas and Butters are fabulous well-established actresses who could hold their own in scenes better than the men.
Overall while generally the movie was good, what did I enjoy? The fact that the movie is set nearly all over Europe and Asia rather than just America was a nice change. The movie also has great aesthetics and cinematography throughout which is what really got me through in the end. Sadly, there were a lot of aspects and scenes within the movie that bored me and I personally found very annoying. From drawn out fight sequences to unnecessary filler scenes it made the movie seem extremely slow and almost repetitive in parts. It would not be a movie I’d watch again unless I had to.
The Gray Man is now available to stream on Netflix.
Sophie Melia – Entertainment and Lifestyle Editor