The Man from U.N.C.L.E. - Review

The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is 2015's quintessential spy caper. Everything about The Man from U.N.C.L.E. oozes style, from its fantastic soundtrack to its perfect casting. The movie starts off with a bang and doesn't let up until the final credits begin to roll.

"For a special agent you're not having a very special day."

Right off the bat, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. throws you right into the action. Guy Ritchie makes the smart choice not to tell you exactly who the main characters are right at the beginning, instead letting you learn the characters through their actions. This pays off later in one of my favorite scenes from the movie, where Henry Cavill sits in a truck and drinks an expensive bottle of wine as his partner Armie Hammer is being pursued by dozens of hostiles. What makes this scene special is that there is a lot happening on the screen, but it is completely devoid of dialogue and sounds, save for the music. This scene, along with others, shows the genuine style of director Guy Ritchie, and the promise that Cavill and Hammer may have later on in their careers.

The Nazis, and the British, and the What?

The one large flaw I saw in The Man from U.N.C.L.E. was that the story could get pretty confusing. While the ending was able to add some closure to the Cold War caper, I was never quite sure of the characters' motivations. Having never read the comics or seen the TV show, I don't know if this has always been a problem or just growing pains from the transition to the silver screen.

The Music

So much of what makes The Man from U.N.C.L.E. great is its absolutely stellar soundtrack. I only own one film soundtrack, (Guardians of the Galaxy) but I would absolutely purchase this album if it ever came to vinyl. In addition to the music, the sound cues are also on point. There are many moments where Armie Hammer is overcome by his temper, and are always accompanied by thundering horns and drums to establish the dangerous mood.

The Mark of the Ritchie

Guy Ritchie has made some amazing movies, but the series that most resembles The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is his Sherlock Holmes series. The quick cuts and flashy cinematography is a clear trademark of Ritchie. Fortunately, that style works extremely well for The Man from U.N.C.L.E., because it helps bring out the comic book and cartoony roots of the series. This is certainly a Guy Ritchie movie, but it works so well with the source material that it still feels unique.

Summary

The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is an amazingly stylish and fun movie that perfectly showcases both the director's and actors' talent. The promise is large and the scale is grand, and Ritchie pulls it off without a hitch.

Pros- Leads, cinematography, music, creative gadgets

Cons- Confusing story