The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Review | ‘Argylle’ is a lazy, muddled mess

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Courtesy of IMDb

“Argylle” is the newest film from director Matthew Vaughn, who is mainly known for his “Kingsman” movies, “X-Men: First Class” and “Kick-Ass.”

Vaughn’s movies are known for their over-the-top action and twisted moments, which had audiences excited for his next work after the release of his 2022 film “The King’s Man.”

In “Argylle,” esteemed author Elly Conway (Bryce Dallas Howard) gets roped into a messy situation with a secret hidden organization as real-life events unravel to the pattern of her recent book.

She is helped by Aiden (Sam Rockwell), a spy who mirrors one of the characters in her book, as they try to take down the secret organization before they can spur chaos across the world.

On paper, this concept sounds engaging and entertaining; if it were pulled off right, “Argylle” would have been an incredible experience. However, that wasn’t the case.

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    Right off the bat, “Argylle” has an extremely rough start, as the first 15 minutes consist of extremely uninteresting exposition and introductions that feel as slow as sitting in standstill traffic. 

    The movie suffers from dull writing, giving off a feeling that Vaughn was going more for style than substance. As a result, there’s an overabundance of characters that get little to no introduction as to who they are and why they do the things they do.

    Because of this, there’s a severe lack of importance to many of the characters, making the audience not care about them and their motives — or, in this case, lack of motives.

    “Argylle” also likes to confuse the audience with its writing, as there are often twists thrown to the audience that, while unexpected, are absurd, only adding to that feeling of the movie being more style over substance. 

    Twists in movies have the ability to not only engage the audience but also keep the audience invested in the story you have to tell. But when a movie just spits out twist after twist to the viewers, it leaves the audience feeling more confused than anything else.

    As a result, “Argylle” is the equivalent of a pair of entangled earbuds that you never want to use again because you know it won’t be worth going through great pain just to untangle that mess.

    The performances in “Argylle” are entertaining enough for the most part, with Rockwell and Howard’s performances acting as the backbone for the film. They are not only engaging in their roles but their chemistry on screen was well-done and fitting for their characters.

    The rest of the characters and roles are portrayed as best as possible but are dragged down by the questionable screenplay.

    When compared to Vaughn’s “Kingsman” movies, the action in “Argylle” is engaging enough to keep audiences from leaving but is tamer and more held back than Vaughn’s other movies, which may leave fans of the director disappointed. This was likely due to the film’s PG-13 rating.

    “Argylle” and its concept is something that deserved better but was instead left in the oven for a little too long, resulting in a project that is a little overcooked for both fans of Vaughn’s work and general audiences.

     

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