Who do you send to kill the best killer in the world? Pioneering director Ang Lee’s 14th feature sees an ageing hitman seeking retirement. But learning the truth about his final hit puts the sensationally talented assassin on the run from an equally gifted, albeit younger, man sent to terminate him. But the only person capable of putting Brogan down once and for all is himself. Or rather, a clone of himself 25 years younger.
Gemini Man’s script is exactly the kind of sci-fi actioner that abounded in the ‘90s, and as such, the script seems wholly secondary, sacrificing emotion and intrigue for excitement that feels as cheap as it did 20 years ago. Ricocheting from one cliché to the next, the plot fails to surprise at any turn, the dialogue seriously harming what a strong cast of actors might have been able to achieve emotionally with better material.
What makes Gemini Man special is the technology being shown off. Flawless CGI creates a younger version of Will Smith, but what truly amazes is the overall visual quality. Shot in 60 frames per second (over double the standard), everything in Lee’s film appears so smooth, visually unique. Gone are the quick edits familiar to modern action, and the set pieces bewilder with steady elegance. In the quieter moments, cinematographer Dion Beebe allows for beautifully intimate closeups, and never has a film felt so much that the characters are really in the room, talking face to face with the audience.
Lee’s film is perhaps one of the most important advocates for making the trip to see a film at the cinema, and even more so to spend that little bit extra for IMAX and 3D glasses. It just seems a shame that a team of writers couldn’t cobble together something worthy of this technological landmark.
CAST: Will Smith, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Clive Owen, Benedict Wong
DIRECTOR: Ang Lee
WRITERS: David Benioff, Billy Ray, Darren Lemke
SYNOPSIS: An ageing hitman must defeat a younger clone of himself in order to survive.