Synopsis: The Gray Man, which released on Netflix on 22nd July 2002, within 2 hours and some minutes, takes the viewer to a whirlwind tour of the world and delivers a narrative, which is more a heady concoction of Jason Bourne series as also Fast And Furious. However, does it make the adrenaline rush?
For the aficionados of action films whose appetite has been vetted through the action sequences of Bourne, Mission Impossible as also Fast and Furious series, The Gray Man is a package that tries to pick up nuggets from both of these series and take the audience on a trip where he goes on a world trip riding on action sequences which then seen to have been all sewn up.
The templates that define this genre include:
- An agent who is under incarceration must be resurrected to execute a job and kill another agent from his fraternity who has supposedly crossed the Rubicon. (Jason Bourne Series)
- A trainer who is used as a bait to settle the score when the agent aka The Gray Man is difficult to catch.
- Those holding powers in the secret agencies suddenly find themselves invincible and start waging war around the world for personal aggrandizements, but a mole or an evidence appears that has to be silenced. (Jason Bourne)
- An action sequence on a plane which will go burst but the hero will survive though he does not have a parachute (Fast and Furious Series)
- Racing sequences involving diversified modes of communication shooting through iconic locales- Vienna in this case (Fast and Furious)
- A child who has certain ailment and he needs to be kept under protection but has to be a part of the action (Fast and Furious Series)
The Gray Man follows the template to the hilt and to lure eyeballs of the Indian audience- especially South Indian audience, has included Dhanush as a surprise package in the film, but the stature of Dhanush is not at all justified with the role that he has enacted in the film. Dhanush is a competent actor, and he is portraying the role of a sidekick and being Tamilian underlines the mindset of Hollywood film directors against the Asian communities. They have tried to cover it up with a sensitive nerve for the character, where Dhanush hands over the locket – the bone of contention in the film – by uttering in the dialogue that a girl is involved which is against his character so he will not seek any charge as well for the duty that he executed!
The most captivating sequence of The Gray Man is the one involving the tram in Prague. It has been shot evocatively capturing the essence of a slick sequence. It is one the longest sequences to be filmed in Prague, and if the film attains eyeballs, it would be one of the best advertisements for the city of Prague. The Gray Man is supposedly the most expensive film of Netflix, which has traveled all across the globe including Bangkok, London, Germany, Prague, Austria, Azerbaijan, and Croatia.
Centering around a CIA operative gone rogue, who is named Six, uncovers the slimy secrets of the CIA arising from a botched-up mission to assassinate another of the agents in Bangkok. As Six the main character is now privy to secrets the film rolls on as a hunt to know this man out who has shades of gray to his character and hence the name The Gray Man. Chris Evans of the Avengers fame is the private contractor-Lloyd Hansen who has been assigned the job to hunt down Six. Six has to survive attempts of hunt and save the daughter of his mentor. The climax of the film is shot in Chateau de Chantilly in France, which seems to have resemblance to the mirror sequence from Enter the Dragon.
Normally such films of the likes of The Gray Man are followed by a sequence announcement, but it still eludes in this case. Is the cost a damper?
Movie: The Gray Man
Director: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo
Cast: Ryan Gosling, Cameron Crovetti, Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Jessica Henwick, Regé-Jean Page, Wagner Moura, Julia Butters, Dhanush, Alfre Woodard, Billy Bob Thornton, Callan Mulvey, DeObia Oparei, Robert Kazinsky, Shea Whigham, Eme Ikwuakor
Streaming on: Netflix
Run Time: 129 Mins