Will Smith goes all looper as a retired hitman facing off against his younger self in this FX heavy slugfest!
With Rambo and Terminator flopping at the box office and Nic Cage more or less sunk into straight to DVD obscurity, the last few years have not been kind to our favourite 80’s/90’s hardmen.
Will Smith who for a while has moved away from holding a gun and giving chase to star in more drama like films, is slowly coming back into the action genre and while the likes of the latest Bad Boys sequel makes it seem like success, the likes of Gemini Man gives a tiny hint that he could end up joining Cage and Bruce Willis in the same path, If he doesn’t pick the right material.
In an age where the likes of John Wick is walking around to huge acclaim, this action piece directed by Ang Lee is a tiresome slog that reaches boredom, long before we get to the finale.
Smith plays Henry Brogdan, the best hit man around who works for the Defense Intelligence Agency. Like all those in his profession in this kind of film, Henry decides enough is enough as guilt begins to gather among his thoughts and decides to step away.
Of course, in a cliche riddled plot, those high up in the ranking are not best pleased and decide to get rid, with Clay Varris (Clive Owen) in charge of genetically engineered soldiers, leading the way to bring Henry down.
One of those men under his guard is a younger Will Smith…..how? Well no spoiler, so the gimmick of the entire premise is of a 51 year old Smith, fighting off his Fresh Prince Of Bel Air self, a gimmick that on paper sounds like a blast.
Sadly it’s not.
Unlike the similar sounding Looper which ironically was Bruce Willis last great action film, Gemini Man lacks the intelligence to rise itself up from a same old script.
In what is an endless barrage of chase sequences with a wasted Mary Elizabeth Winstead stuck between the two, the action may raise the stakes when it comes to the effects – and yes the two Smith’s fighting each other is pretty impressive FX work – the rest of the movie is nothing but of the mediocre quality which will frustrate more than enitice.
Lee and Smith are two great artists of the film world and will do better than this, but as the script has been sitting on the shelves since the early 90’s to be made, perhaps in hindsight that is where it should have stayed.
The reality is, even if it was made in the 1990’s, Gemini Man probably would have still felt dated, but with even worse effects, because for the 2020’s, yes….its great to be wowed now and again with dazzling imagery, but if you have a plot next to it which is empty and boring, then what is the point?
Sadly Gemini Man has a huge thumbs up for one of those, but a huge thumbs down for two of them……