The Old Guard (2020, Gina Prince-Bythewood)

It’s rare that I get through a movie this bad without losing sympathy for the actors, but they all come off well, it’s the writing that lets them down, channeling a story of underground immortal warriors covertly helping people (whenever people can be helped through extreme violence) into a by-numbers movie full of cliche lines. At least everyone in the movie is gay (except the homophobic US military).

KiKi Layne, unrecognizable from Beale Street, is the wide-eyed newbie getting welcomed to the immortals club just as old-timer Charlize Theron is losing her powers. Teammates Joe (Aladdin 2019’s Jafar) and Nicky (Martin Eden himself) work with the vaguely Tim-Rothian Booker (Matthias Schoenaerts of A Bigger Splash), who is selling them out to Chiwetel Ejiofor, who works for evil tech billionaire Harry Melling. Unexpected “six months later” sequel setup when their ancient ever-drowning companion returns from the deep, but I’m checking who in my network recommended this so I can ignore their review when the next movie comes out… looks like Singer, Kois, and oh no, D’Angelo.

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