Aiden holding up a cat while Elly looks on horrified

Argylle

February 15, 2024
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This film is so bad that I watched two people get up and leave before the credits rolled, and I seriously considered going with them.

Argylle follows popular novelist Elly Conway (Bryce Dallas Howard) as she finishes her latest book featuring the fictional spy named Aubrey Argylle, a popular character she has the uncanny ability to write like she were Argylle herself. Soon dragged into the secretive world of spies and assassins, Elly is befriended by Aiden (Sam Rockwell), an eccentric yet highly trained spy who is the only person stopping Elly from being killed by a shifty organization called the Division. Forced to go on the run with Aiden, Elly’s fictional stories inexplicably become a roadmap for their spy adventures, something that puts Elly in more danger than she’s ever been in her entire life.

I gotta be honest, Argylle is so bad that it’s my current pick for worst movie of the year, and that’s a distinction I don’t usually make for any film, no matter how much I think it sucked. Directed by Matthew Vaughn, a talented creator who made great comic book movies like Kick-Ass, the Kingsman films, and even the exceptional X-Men: First Class, there’s absolutely no reason why there should be so much wrong with this film though I’ll do my best complain about as much as I can. And while this film is not without its average thrills that give glimpses of what this movie could have and should have been, it took all I had in me not to walk out of the theater myself.

Full of cringey, exposition-riddled dialogue, annoying story elements that bend over backward trying to be clever yet end up coming across as head-scratchingly dumb instead, and a whole lot of underwhelming action that does nothing for the entertainment value of the film, Argylle is a misfire that would have flopped even on streaming services, to say nothing about why it was released on the big screen in the first place. Struggling to tell a story full of story beats that simply didn’t work while pushed along by annoying characters who make their stellar actors look bad, I can probably call out something trash in every scene of this movie and still be missing a lot. Trust me when I say you won’t find much to like about this one and leave it at that.

Though the cast and creative talent behind the camera would suggest this movie would, at the very least, be a mindless popcorn flick that entertains on the basest of levels, Argylle is instead a terrible mess of a film that has almost no saving graces that I could see. The story is incredibly stupid, the direction is trying too hard, the cast is completely misused, and in a haircut move that needs to be condemned to the depth of Hollywood hell, the filmmakers somehow made Henry Cavill look like a dweeb. I truly hope Matthew Vaughn bounces back in a way I know he can, but when it comes to Argylle, I just want my money and time back.

This film is so bad that I watched two people get up and leave before the credits rolled, and I seriously considered going with them. Argylle follows popular novelist Elly Conway (Bryce Dallas Howard) as she finishes her latest book featuring the fictional spy named Aubrey Argylle, a popular character she has the uncanny ability to write like she were Argylle herself. Soon dragged into the secretive world of spies and assassins, Elly is befriended by Aiden (Sam Rockwell), an eccentric yet highly trained spy who is the only person stopping Elly from being killed by a shifty organization called the Division. Forced to go on the run with Aiden, Elly’s fictional stories inexplicably become a roadmap for their spy adventures, something that puts Elly in more danger than she’s ever been in her entire life. I gotta be honest, Argylle is so bad that it’s my current pick for worst movie of the year, and that’s a distinction I don’t usually make for any film, no matter how much I think it sucked. Directed by Matthew Vaughn, a talented creator who made great comic book movies like Kick-Ass, the Kingsman films, and even the exceptional X-Men: First Class, there’s absolutely no reason why there should be so much wrong with this film though I'll do my best complain about as much as I can. And while this film is not without its average thrills that give glimpses of what this movie could have and should have been, it took all I had in me not to walk out of the theater myself. Full of cringey, exposition-riddled dialogue, annoying story elements that bend over backward trying to be clever yet end up coming across as head-scratchingly dumb instead, and a whole lot of underwhelming action that does nothing for the entertainment value of the film, Argylle is a misfire that would have flopped even on streaming services, to say nothing about why it was released on the big screen in the first place. Struggling to tell a story full of story beats that simply didn't work while pushed along by annoying characters who make their stellar actors look bad, I can probably call out something trash in every scene of this movie and still be missing a lot. Trust me when I say you won’t find much to like about this one and leave it at that. Though the cast and creative talent behind the camera would suggest this movie would, at the very least, be a mindless popcorn flick that entertains on the basest of levels, Argylle is instead a terrible mess of a film that has almost no saving graces that I could see. The story is incredibly stupid, the direction is trying too hard, the cast is completely misused, and in a haircut move that needs to be condemned to the depth of Hollywood hell, the filmmakers somehow made Henry Cavill look like a dweeb. I truly hope Matthew Vaughn bounces back in a way I know he can, but when it comes to Argylle, I just…

4.5

A Convoluted Mess

The Verdict

4.5

5

Brian is first and foremost a nerd in every way shape and form. He likes to compare himself to a black hole, consuming any and every form of entertainment unlucky enough to get caught in his gravitational pull. It's not uncommon on any given day for him to read a couple comics, settle down with a good book, watch a few movies (inside and out of the theater), catch up on his ever growing but never depleting Hulu queue, challenge himself with a few good video games, listen to any music he can get his hands on and, of course, write his heart out. He spends every waking moment dreaming up interesting and intriguing concepts and ideas that will hopefully one day inspire and entertain anyone looking for an escape from their daily lives. Graduating from Full Sail University in good old humid Florida, Brian currently lives and works in New York City and is waiting for the day when all he has to do is wake up and create something unique and new for people to enjoy. He is always in the process of writing scripts and stories and is constantly on the lookout for ways to enhance and build his creative drive. After all, life is just one big story, all that really matters is how you strive to make it the best story possible. Disclaimer: Brian does not actually have powdered green skin in case anyone was wondering. A Skrull I am not. Blame the guys at the Color Run for this one.

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