Juggling angry Russians, the British Mi5, and an international terrorist, debonair art dealer and part time rogue Charlie Mortdecai races to recover a stolen painting rumored to contain a code that leads to lost Nazi gold.
The greatest Olympic Wrestling Champion brother team joins Team Foxcatcher led by multimillionaire sponsor John E. du Pont as they train for the 1988 games in Seoul - a union that leads to unlikely circumstances.
An ocean's worth of clichéd characters inhabit the rusty old submarine (and script) skippered by an obscurely Scottish Jude Law in search of well yes, in search of that old faithful of such nautical adventures a cache of Nazi gold bullion nestling in the rusty hull of a sunken German U-boat. Or, rather, maybe it was Russian gold? Whatever; it's sitting there at the bottom of the Black Sea just waiting to be plundered.
Writer Dennis Kelly has surely populated his story with every stereotypical, sweaty, unshaven macho alpha-male he's ever chanced upon in similar though far loftier stories of this genre.
The film is shot mainly in shades of grey and black with the odd splash of red lighting to emphasis trouble is brewing way down beneath the waves, and forewarning the audience of a further onslaught of "effing and blinding" about to be unleashed on their eardrums. And as for those Russian accents .. 'The Man from UNCLE' conjured up more linguistic realism back in 1968.
Admittedly, the claustrophobic atmosphere aboard the sub is enthusiastically portrayed and some of the set explosive interludes are well orchestrated; but honestly, one feels no responsiveness towards any of the characters and I really couldn't have cared less as to who lived or died. Surely not what the author or director should have intended? If a viewer can't identify or empathise with at least one character in a film; then the whole point of that movie's existence needs to be questioned.
Some of the continuity was bizarre to say the least. At one point, in a fit of wrath following a member of his motley crew discovering he'd won the lottery (don't ask; it's a scene that is about as believable as The Tooth Fairy), our pseudo-Scottish Captain smashes the only receiver aboard the vessel with a wrench, only to be seen attempting to use the same said radio equipment an hour further into the movie, with ne'er a mark or dint to be spied on its pristine surface.
By the time the film's spiralling implausible narrative has successfully disposed of most of the unlikeable crew, and a sudden potential way of escaping the quickly-sinking script is 'discovered'- one that is set to trigger off yet further disquiet and fisticuffs amongst the survivors - I'd given up the will to continue and vacated the cinema ten-minutes before the (presumably) quite daft conclusion. Who survived, if any, I couldn't tell you, nor alas do I care.
And as for that Russian-cum-Nazi gold..............
Jude Law must try harder! Please note.
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