Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Dwayne Johnson, Gal Gadot and Ritu Arya
Run time: 1h 58min
If Raiders of the Lost Ark, National Treasure, True Lies and Ocean’s Eleven somehow got together and made a film baby, it would be Red Notice.
Nolan Booth (Ryan Reynolds) is a wisecracking (obviously) sophisticated art thief. As he hunts for three oversized Fabergé-style eggs that were once the property of Egyptian Queen Cleopatra herself, he’s pursued by doggedly determined FBI profiler John Hartley (Dwayne Johnson). However, one step ahead of both is the enigmatic Bishop (Gal Gadot). Before you can say “bromance” the boys team up to bash the bishop and stop her from stealing the notorious third egg and claiming a reward from a wealthy Egyptian businessman, whilst all three attempt to avoid persistent Interpol agent Urvashi Das (Ritu Arya).
There’s much to enjoy about director / writer Rawson Marshall Thurber’s action comedy. All the standard set-pieces from this genre are present and correct. Chase through a museum – check – tuxedo and cocktail gown masked ball – check – prison bust – check – double / triple / quadruple cross – check. They’re all here and although it’s predictable, that doesn’t mean it isn’t a hell of a lot of fun.
Reynolds and Johnson are great together. Easily riffing their way through many a clearly improvised scene, they both play up to their readily established screen personas and revel in each other’s company. Gal Gadot holds her own against the boys and lights up the screen as a different kind of wonder woman when she appears (I couldn’t help but be reminded of the brilliant Paloma (Ana de Armas) from the recent No Time to Die).
Some rather obvious green screen action sequences are let down by iffy visual effects, but there’s a self-aware frivolity to the globetrotting hijinks and it’s a highly entertaining romp for most of the family to enjoy. I say most, because it’s surprisingly potty-mouthed so perhaps best to heed the 12A certificate.
Although nothing new and certainly nothing we haven’t seen before, Red Notice is popcorn entertainment at its best. Sit back and enjoy the ride.
Oh, and keep your eyes peeled for a beautiful blink and you miss Easter Egg. They knocked this particular one out of the ark.
Red Notice is in select UK cinemas now and will be on Netflix from 12th November