Movie Reviews

Gemini Man Movie Review: Will Smith Is The Ang Lee Young Man

Gemini Man

Starring  Will Smith, Mary Elizabeth Winstead,  Benedict Wong, Clive Owen

Directed  by Ang Lee

Rating; ****(4 stars)

Don’t believe  the early reviews  abroad. Gemini  Man   may not be as  esoteric as  Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon or as pathbreaking as Lee’s  Brokeback Mountain.  But it’s definitely an intriguing and  seductive mind-bender shot in  style thatis at once unique and intimate,  about an aging assassin(Will Smith, taking the  50-centric jokes on his still-taut chin)  who is chased  down by another assassin who is exactly  Smith’s clone , but 30 years  younger.

 Luckily  for  Ang Lee’s core audience  Gemini Man doesn’t devote itself to playing a  game  called  Hum Aapke Hai  Clone…Getting over the sheer awe  of watching two Will Smiths—old and young—fight  against  one another is  easy when the script moves  from one  expertly  executed action sequence  to another   and some wry exchanges  between  people who are afraid  to  expose their true emotions.

This is as  good a time  as any to say  that  Gemini Man features the best bike chase  I’ve ever seen in cinema from any part  of  the  world. Without detailing  the  action I’d  say watching Junior Smith   track down the Senior Smith is  a  joy to behold. Will Smith  excels in  both the parts  

bringing a kind of unfathomable  pain to  both  the  older and none the wiser , and  the  youngernaïve touchy clone.

Where the film fails is in detailing the  lives of the  other characters. The  very charming  Mary Elizabeth Winstead and  Benedict Wong  are mere sidekicks to Smith’s character  brought in  to  add cultural diversity  to  a  plot that bristles  with activity and yet  manages to remain  calm  on  the  top.

The  narrative also makes room for humour. Smith’s boss at his son’s school  needs to talk to Smith from  an unknown number. He offers passing  girl student a 100 dollars to make the call from her phone.The mundane is never too far away  from  global affairs.

Interestingly Smith and Winstead  are never shown  getting  romantically attached to one another.  We are  not sure the older Smith has had much of a  love life. He portrays  a  character so  frayed at  the  edges that the centre threatens to  fall apart.As for  the  younger Smith,  it is a marvel of   CGs,  yes. But the tears of fear vulnerability and  uncertainty are  real. This is  where  this  hard-edged soft-hearted  tale of  introspective action scores the best.

Gemini Man  doesn’t  move back in awe of  its own technical superiority. Instead the narrative wraps its head around the  characters,  unraveling their uncertain  lives across several continents  without getting breathless.

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