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In All The Old Knives, spy Chris Pine has no advantage over Jack Ryan

In All The Old Knives, spy Chris Pine has no advantage over Jack Ryan

Thandwe Neaton and Chris Pine in All Old Knives

Chris Pine’s career as Jack Ryan ended abruptly after one movie, but like George Lazenby and James Bond, he might make him the perfect man to play impersonations of other iconic heroes. In the All the old knives, Pine enters the movie with perfect hair, an absurdly weird scarf, and a dead-on look, Derek Zoolander’s look more than the tough-witted Tom Clancy analyst. But director Janos Metz-Pederson wastes quite a bit of time in the espionage world of Blue Steel before tapping into the less superficial qualities taught to him by Pine Ryan and James Kirk, even if his role here feels like an impersonator to the best of it.

Most films set in the “present” use their expected release date as a time period. This is set explicitly in 2020, the year of production, but it also contains recurring memories of 2012, indicated by the iconic images of Barack Obama on the walls of CIA offices. In this “reality” of 2012, the hijacking of a major Austrian airliner ended with the deaths of everyone on board, and eight years later the case was reopened. Henry Pelham Payne is tasked by director Vic Wallinger (Lawrence Fishburne) to find out why the problem wasn’t solved the first time.

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While the possibility of a mole exists, the greater possibility is that Henry’s classmate and former lover, Celia (Thandwe Newton), or at least someone she knows, is the culprit. During the perfect Golden Hour dinner in Carmel, a conversation begins between them, accompanied by a series of flashbacks to discover what really happened. Henry has a hitman outside waiting to take Celia out if he doesn’t like what he hears, but Celia, despite her retirement, is smart enough to prepare with her own support.

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It seems fitting that Amazon initially grew into a retail giant based on book sales, and is now a studio that produces the cinematic equivalent of airport buying motives. About ten years ago, adapted from the novel by Olin Steinhauser All the old knives It could have easily rivaled the theatrical versions of John Grisham and Scott Turow’s bestselling books, but audiences wouldn’t pay more than $20 a ticket, at least not in theaters. Streaming services stepped in to fill the void, along with companies like Potboiler Productions, whose name could not be more apt to develop films like this.

In addition to their intellectual duel, Payne and Newton engage in a bedroom confrontation, a welcome response to social media complaining about the lack of love scenes in contemporary films. Then again, the movie is mostly set in 2020, so maybe it’s a bit of a nostalgia. However, from his famous ass to Jonathan Pryce’s American accent, All the old knives Convincing in every moment, but then viewers may still have questions about what the characters were trying to achieve or why they were involved. Payne and Newton capture the public’s attention, but as CIA analysts both seem to be missing out on details that might be important to their jobs, though in fairness, they’re easy to get distracted by their mutual warmth.

Through thick and thin, the film categorizes both Islamic terrorists and (indirectly) Vladimir Putin as the world’s most evil, and highlights the problems that arise when other world powers try to take sides. But, All the old knives It provides enough clearinghouse for the notorious bad guys (here comes Chechnya!) that it probably looks more like a waste of time than a calculated geopolitical referendum. Critics may be wary of taking the CIA for granted, but this movie is unlikely to provoke any deeper cultural debate than what it should have seen on a Friday night after Mom and Dad put the kids to bed and poured a few glasses of wine. . Not to mention, it’s clearly told from the CIA’s point of view, no matter which character the viewer ends up with.

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While it’s unlikely that Pine would have found a new franchise here, the actor’s ability to show courage and then undermine it with weakness makes him an ideal actor for projects other than Jack. Maybe he’ll do it next time consumables.