RE-VIEW: The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

Re-View, with Matt Murphy

I WAS vaguely aware of the existence of a television show named The Man from U.N.C.L.E. but certainly nothing about it's place in the history of the espionage genre. Apparently it was close to the first (of many) during the 1960's to cash in on the Cold War hysteria. Originally scripted by Mr. Bond himself, Ian Fleming, the American TV series ran from 1964-68, with roughly the same tone as the early Bond films and similar shows of the time The Saint and Mission:Impossible.

In this remake by director Guy Ritchie (I am obliged to follow his name with 'Madonna's Ex') a suave, reluctant CIA agent and former criminal Napoleon Solo, (Henry Cavill) is forced to work with a Russian counterpart (Armie Hammer) to deliver the world from, you guessed it, evil. From which evil you ask, well think of the all time go to 'bad guys' in spy movie history - Nazis. Why do they still want to destroy the world, you ask? Well, the important thing is that it's never mentioned and doesn't really matter. Just enjoy the ride, the music, the style and all the good looking people being charismatic.

Unfortunately it just doesn't work. Certainly the dudes are handsome enough and the gals are exotic and promiscuous but this can't make up for the awful plotting. In some films, plots don't matter at all, relying on gorgeous characters and a playful, clever script for the movie stars just to have fun with. Think the Ocean's Eleven franchise. In this version, however, it comes down to nobody really sharing any chemistry and the end result is unintentionally closer to Get Smart than the modern day James Bond.

P.S. I was actually trying to see Last Cab to Darwin but missed my opportunity.

Insert Uber joke here.



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