Life of Pie director Ang Lee takes an ambitious shot with Gemini Man, which is finally seeing the light of day in theatres after the script was passed around Hollywood for more than two decades. After many big-name actors passed on the role, Will Smith steps into the starring role as Henry Brogan, an assassin who finds himself being hunted by a younger clone; but does Gemini Man deliver enough intrigue and action to warrant its 20-year wait?
There’s no denying that the premise of Gemini Man is a captivating one. The idea of having to face-off against yourself is a compelling prospect, but unfortunately, Gemini Man fails to really capitalise on many of the ideas it brushes against throughout its runtime. However, that’s not to say the film isn’t enjoyable, as there are some high-octane action sequences worth experiencing – just don’t expect too much thought to go into how they play out.
As for the style of the film, it’s extremely dark, which is rather unusual for an Ang Lee movie. The action scenes are therefore often confusing and disorientating, especially in the Smith vs. Smith fight sequences. The quality seems to vary so drastically from one moment to the next, that it’s hard to not wonder if there were some creative indecisions on how scenes would play out.
There are some strong moments during Gemini Man, whereby Smith and his co-star, the always-enjoyable Mary Elizabeth Winstead (The Thing, 10 Cloverfield Lane), produce some convincing performances, but the lacklustre plot leaves everything feeling a little flat.
While the recreated, younger version of Smith’s character is jarringly uncanny to his Fresh Prince of Bel Air days, some other visual effects are unavoidably rubbery and unpolished. It’s unfortunate given that there’s a really good concept beneath the ham-fisted second-half.
Gemini Man is a fun film if you’re looking for something to keep you busy for an hour and a half, but it’s almost-there de-aging technology and predictable script make it less than memorable.
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Gemini Man is a fun and interesting concept, but its facial de-aging technology of its star Will Smith looks great while static but struggles in motion. It's boring script and predictable outcome also leave it on the 'rent later' shelf.