Gemini Man Review: Impressive But Flawed Action Flick With A Starring Turn By Will Smith
The Film Gemini Man’s impressive visuals are supported by some strong performances. But this sci-fi thriller is fatally undermined by a frustratingly subpar story.
If you are a 3D Cinema’s fan, you will likely be impressed by how well the format suits the film even if it only really makes use of it for around half of the runtime. Uneven but ambitious, Ang Lee’s return to the action genre isn’t as good as it should be but Will Smith, Benedict Wong, and Mary Elizabeth Winstead make this weird flick an entertaining watch even with an uninspired script.
Actually, the script for Gemini Man has been floating around Hollywood since 1997 and in those 22 years, it has gained something of a mythic status. Throughout its development, it’s seen huge stars attached including Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone, and even Sean Connery.
Eventually, Will Smith landed the lead and with Ang Lee at the helm. Gemini Man finally saw the light of day. So was the long-gestating action flick worth the two decade-plus wait? That depends on what you like from your action movies.
Gemini Man is an innovative action-thriller starring Will Smith as Henry Brogan, an elite assassin, who is suddenly targeted and pursued by a mysterious young operative that seemingly can predict his every move.
Rating: PG-13 (for violence and action throughout, and brief strong language)
Genre: Mystery & Suspense, Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By: Ang Lee
Written By: David Benioff, Billy Ray, Darren Lemke
In Theaters: Oct 11, 2019 Wide
Runtime: 116 minutes
Studio: Paramount Pictures
What are the Critics saying about Gemini Man?
Anthony Lane (New Yorker)
Fans of double characters should stick with Austin Powers, who, in “The Spy Who Shagged Me” (1999), enjoys the rare privilege of meeting the person he was ten minutes ago. “You,” he says, “are adorable.”
Joe Morgenstern (Wall Street Journal)
The frame rate doesn’t speed up the pace. The film bogs down woefully between action sequences. The shake rate wasn’t sufficient to keep my body from going slack while my mind meandered through the story’s incoherence.
Mark Daniell (Toronto Sun)
Will Smith’s kinetic charm goes a long way to making us forgive some of those shortcomings, particularly if you grew up on the ’90s action films that helped make him a global star. But a movie with this type of artistic pedigree deserves more.
Richard Roeper (Chicago Sun-Times)
The idiotic spy thriller, pitting a dark-ops assassin against his younger clone, uses slick new technology but tired old plot twists.
Weldon B. Johnson (Arizona Republic)
If you’re a fan of action movies, or you’ve ever pondered the questions of nature vs nuture or even what you’ll tell your younger self if you had a chance. you’ll enjoy “Gemini Man.”
Peter Bradshaw (The Guardian)
The digital novelty is striking for the first 10 minutes, silly for the next 10 minutes, and by the end of the movie you’re pining for the analogue values of script and direction.