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Ready Steady Cut EP55 – Reviews Round-Up – Atomic Blonde

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This is Episode 55 of the Ready, Steady, Cut! Podcast. On this episode, we do our reviews round-up and discuss movie releases we have watched from the 1st half of August. The headline review for this round-up is Atomic Blonde. All films that we review in this episode are spoiler-free. All the movies that we review are listed below.

Episode Breakdown:

00:00 – Intro and Round-Up Summary
Movie Reviews
03:07 – Kidnap 
10:59 – Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
23:16 – Icarus
34:20 – The Emoji Movie
44:20 – Naked
52:02 – Burning Sands
1:00:03 – Girls Trip
1:09:25 – Message from the King
Headline Reviews
1:15:55 – Atomic Blonde
1:25:37 – Final Comments

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Review – Atomic Blonde

What’s this?

It’s Jane Wick.

Okay, sorry, that’s not entirely accurate. But I’ve had that joke lined up since the first trailer, and while it might not be my best work, I needed to get it off my chest. It’s half right, anyway. Atomic Blonde is about a badass super-spy punching, shooting and stabbing her way through a stylized aesthetic under the direction of David Leitch. Certainly sounds like John Wick to me.

But, alas, Atomic Blonde isn’t that – at least not all the time. In reality, it’s based on a moderately obscure graphic novel, The Coldest City, and takes the form, structurally and tonally, of a twisty Cold War espionage thriller full of Soviet skulduggery and collapsing communist regimes. Which isn’t exactly what was advertised.

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Review – The Fate of the Furious

The Fast & Furious series is a joke.

I mean, seriously – this is literally a joke. I just sat down to watch the eighth instalment of a franchise that started as a series of dude-bro drag-racing movies that, by this point, has recast its street-racing reprobate cast as world-saving freelance do-gooders embroiled in a global thermonuclear cyberthriller. And I really liked it. It’s good. Perhaps, for the first time since Fast Five, not exactly great, but certainly good enough that you have to wonder how they keep pulling this off.

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Review – Mad Max: Fury Road

Throughout the press tour for Mad Max: Fury Road, George Miller frequently parroted something Hitchcock had said about his desire to make movies so visually clear that the Japanese could enjoy them without subtitles. They could probably enjoy this one on mute. In the post-apocalyptic Australian outback sound seems almost superfluous. It isn’t that you can’t hear anything; the engines never stop rumbling, the desert sand never stops hissing, and there’s a skull-faced dude strapped to a truckload of amps, riding into battle spewing riffs and plumes of flame from a double-necked guitar with complementary flamethrower. But constant, cacophonous noise is no different to silence. It doesn’t mean anything, and Fury Road doesn’t really care about it. It only cares about furious forward momentum; never stopping, never slowing down, barely even relenting. The closest this movie comes to a plot twist is everyone doing a U-turn and heading back in the direction they came, only faster.

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