Movie Review: "Atomic Blonde"

John Thomas
Charlize Theron and James McAvoy in 'Atomic Blonde.'

There are two women that most other women would love to be, or at least be like. One of them is Charlize Theron, the gorgeous, glamorous, famous film star presently working in Hollywood and New York. The other woman is Lorraine Broughton (also Charlize Theron), the atomic blonde kick-butt, clandestine super-spy, secret agent dashing around East and West Berlin, like a human blender. She chops, kicks and disables anyone in her way.

Lorraine is called in for a debriefing by her two superiors, a CIA agent (John Goodman) and his European counter-part Gray (Tobey Jones) to explain her botched assignment in Berlin. She had been sent to this troubled divided city to collect a list of Western spies and discover the identity of a double agent. This list of names is found in only two places, in the head of the Soviet agent who created it, and a physical copy. The Soviets would also very much like to have it returned - both copies if possible. The West would like to expose the double agent and get their hands on the list - either one or both of them.

 Her contact in East/West Berlin is the station chief David Perival (James McAvoy), who is so undercover it remains an ongoing question of, “Whose side are you on anyway, David?” The two of them scramble around both sides of the Berlin Wall fighting an endless number of opponents who appear when least expected. She, however, is ever-ready, batting at them with anything she can get her hands on, including her head, legs, arms and even her high-heeled shoes.

The story is not as fresh as it might have been in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came tumbling down, but the treatment of the story with impressive special effects, clever dialogue and a perfect musical score make the film fun. It is also a challenge for the viewer to figure out who the bad guys are and who is the winner at the end of the day. Regardless of what either of the two envied women are doing or where they are, the two women both wear stiletto heels with grace and style.

Directed by David Leitch, this is a “should see” movie lasting 115 minutes.


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