3 July 2017

I Spy With My Little Wife

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After Inglorious Basterds and Fury, Allied is another film in which Brad Pitt has some sort of issue with the Nazis. Here he must go into enemy territory and masquerade as Marion Cotillard's husband, which must be nice for him. It's good to know that the war wasn't all doom and gloom. They parade themselves as a couple in front of Nazi soldiers with the intent of killing one specific one when the time is right. Their cover must therefore be absolutely convincing as married partners, so, good for them for portraying their relationship as being one with literally fuck all chemistry. I guess they are pretending to be a newly married couple and I hear that marriage gets a bit tedious after a while. Therefore the sparks that are flying between them are flying about as effectively as a budgie chained to a bowling ball and after suffering a broken fucking wing. Eventually shit goes down, bullets start flying, and the two become a Mr and Mrs Smith for the Churchill generation... so, Mr and Mrs Schmidt, I guess.

Once their mission is over the two of them actually do fall in love, with the actors continuing their interesting choice of having about as much passion in their relationship as two distant neighbours that vaguely recognise each other. For some reason they're living in England at this point, with Brad Pitt working for the British Government. I'm not sure why they're here and why he's working for us although perhaps it was explained and I just missed it. I guess he works for the department of A-List Actors that'll more effectively hoover up the Yankee dollar. It's whilst working here that he's given what I'm led to believe is every husband's fantasy. He's to help decide whether or not his wife is a Nazi spy and then dispose of her if she is. I mean, from what I've seen of marriage, that's just one peg down from giving Pitt a promotion. Henry the 8th had to set up an entirely new fucking church to get rid of his wife and yet all Pitt has to do is write down a mission and see if she leaks it to her sausage loving chums from the country of funny walks.

Suffice to say, Pitt isn't exactly happy with the possibility of his latest shift ending after he's put a bullet into the head of his wife and so he starts to investigate her himself. All the fucker had to do was write down a note and wait a couple of days to see if she'd leak it and he can't even do that. Instead his investigation results in at least one man dying, a disabled man shitting blood in anger, him flying to a Nazi occupied country in a stolen plane and then attempting to break somebody out of prison. I mean, fuck me.. just wait a couple of days for the results will you?! You know how most kids can actually wait until Christmas day for their presents?! Well, I'm guessing that by comparison Pitt was actually one of those kids that would stick the dog in the oven and then give his parents a time limit to reveal where his presents were fucking hidden. He also seems to have forgotten the first two rules of working for the British Government which is “You do not talk about your secret mission”. Well that's the first rule of working for the British Government at least. I think the second might actually be something to do with sticking your cock in a dead pig's mouth.

And on top of this, why did the British Government even tell Pitt that they suspected his wife of being a spy in the first place? Couldn't they just have phoned him up, told him to write down his latest mission, given him the duff information and then waited to see if she'd leak it as they suspected she'd been doing anyway? Telling him their plan just seemed like they'd been afflicted by whatever braggard disease all of Bond's villains have been afflicted with and it's never exactly worked out well for them, has it? Well.. except in OHMSS when Blofeld put a bullet into Bond's innocent wife's head I suppose. They seem to argue in the film that they're telling Pitt because if his wife is a spy it'll have to be him that kills her to prove his loyalty to the country. However if they suspect him of being a spy too then surely telling him their plan just gives him a heads-up that it's time for the two to flee the country. I mean, he does steal a plan and get abroad pretty easily when he's investigating her himself. And if she is found guilty of being a spy how does killing her himself prove that he's not a spy too? Because surely a couple of spies that are married as a cover would find it easier to put a bullet into each others brains than a couple that actually loves the other?!

That's not to say however that this film was unwatchable. Because despite the two leads giving a couple of performances that were flatter than a teenaged hedgehogs tits as she ate pancakes on the motorway, and despite the plot being dumber than any species that decided to eat pancakes on the motorway.. the film was okay. It was watchable. In a year of Gods Of Egypt and Dirty Grandpa, it'd be wrong of me to say it was shit. However in a year of Arrival and Hunt For The Wilderpeople, it'd also be wrong of me to say that it was good. I guess it's one of the clagg nuts of 2016 in that it's not exactly something you could call enjoyable but compared to how shitty some of the shit has been it's really not the worth getting upset about. It's directed by Robert Zemeckis whose obviously a capable pair of hands and so there are flourishes of fun to be found. The early shoot-out is fun, Jared Harris is good value, and the world is more or less believably built for what it is. It's a Hollywood version of the war and Britain, but as that slightly alternate and better looking version of our history goes, it's not the worst. However for a man that's as creative as Zemeckis usually is, Allied feels fairly workman-like with Tab A simply being slotted into Tab B. It's an Ikea flatpack of a movie in which everything conforms to the instructions and yet there's still a load of shit missing by the time you're finished.

In fact one of the few scenes in which you do get a sense of Zemeckis' usual visual flair is when Pitt and Cotillard decide to start mechanically banging in their car during a sand-storm. For a start they both take off all their clothes which just seems unnecessary to me. It's a cramped space so surely all you need to take off is enough that nobodies going to get confused and start riding the gear stick... However as they strip, the storm begins to rage to the point that you can't see anything through the window beyond sand and the camera keeps spinning frantically around and around them. I honestly thought that when they'd finished it was going to be revealed that they'd been dropped off in fucking Oz. However the scene goes literally nowhere and I can only presume it was included so that Zemeckis could show of his magical spinning camera whilst desperately trying to show that these two give a shit for each other. I suppose it's meant to be metaphorical of their whirlwind romance, the passionate but stormy dynamic in which they met each other, and at least some proof they they do have feelings for each other. But the only feeling I had was the ever growing need to piss and the lack of worry that I might miss something if I popped out to the loo before the credits rolled. Thanks for reading and see you again, motherfuckers.

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