Red Notice

  • 27 Nov - 03 Dec, 2021
  • Mag The Weekly

Red Notice plays like a parody of itself – a star-studded, globe-trotting heist caper replete with MacGuffins, twists, and double-crosses. And for its overstuffed two-hour runtime, it gets away with it; the idea of stars like Dwayne Johnson, Gal Gadot and Ryan Reynolds running around in glamorous evening wear and boosting valuable doodads from historic locales is one of the fundamental cornerstones of cinema. The stunts and the surprises come in such a barrage that at some point the charm leaks out of Red Notice, leaving exhaustion behind. We open in Rome, where FBI profiler John Hartley (Johnson) has received intel from shadowy art-world presence The Bishop (Gadot) that master thief Nolan Booth (Reynolds) will be stealing one of the three bejewelled eggs given by Julius Caesar to Cleopatra. Hartley catches Booth in the act, leading to one of the film’s best chases, with Booth’s parkour skills allowing him to scramble through small passages. Hartley and Interpol’s Inspector Das (Ritu Arya) track Booth to his Bali hideaway, but when the egg gets stolen again during the arrest, Das accuses Hartley of being in on the scam and ships him off to the same Russian gulag where Booth is already incarcerated. The action scenes are fun and provide an excuse for the stars to stop quipping so much. The throw down between Johnson and Gadot feels like a missed opportunity, though; you would expect hand-to-hand combat between Wonder Woman and the Rock to be one for the ages, but like so much contemporary movie choreography, excessively frantic editing reveals a lack of rehearsal time.