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Starpower Can’t Save Netflix’s “Red Notice” [Review]

The new film “Red Notice” professes to be an original, but there’s unfortunately nothing unique about it and star power can’t save it. In spite of featuring three of arguably the biggest movie stars in the world right now- Dwayne Johnson, Ryan Reynolds, and Gal Gadot– the movie relies too much on our affection for them as personalities and not enough on bothering to tell a compelling story.

Red Noticeends up being a pretty much paint by numbers crime caper. Johnson plays John Hartley, an FBI profiler on the case of the world’s top two art thieves. Reynolds plays Nolan Booth, the salutatorian of the art crime world top ranked list. Gadot stars as the Bishop – occupying spot numero uno. Through a series of pretty predictable hijinks we end up with various pairings of the trio having to work together (and against each other). 

RED NOTICE – (L-R) Dwayne Johnson is the FBI’s top profiler John Hartley, Gal Gadot is the world’s most wanted art thief “The Bishop” and Ryan Reynolds is the world’s greatest art thief Nolan Booth in Netflix’s RED NOTICE. Directed and written by Rawson Marshall Thurber, RED NOTICE is releasing November 12, 2021. Cr: Frank Masi / Netflix © 2021

Great Expectations, Red (Flag) Notice

We didn’t expect a masterpiece going into the film. However we did hope for something more entertaining than what we got. The film is banking so hard on our affection for the stars. And the script relies heavily on the chemistry between the leads. No one does a horrid job. Yet the dynamics feel about as organic as the product placement for both the Rock and Reynold’s respective spirits companies in the film… Perhaps if they’d worried less about how to cram in Teremana Tequila and Aviation Gin cameos and more about plot we may have had a better time. 

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It almost feels as if at least Reynolds and Johnson are playing caricatures of themselves these days. Gadot gets to flex in a slightly different direction than we’ve seen in say “Wonder Woman” or the Fast franchise, but not by much. 

The action sequences are nothing particularly innovative and the film is a little too wink wink nudge nudge at times. Yet to be clear it’s not a terrible film. If you’re willing to turn off your brain for the duration AND you already like the actors ahead of time it’s a decent background watch. The fact that you can watch it from the comfort of your home is probably actually a plus. 

Ultimately “Red Notice” is a completely forgettable Netflix movie of the week that squanderers the star power attached. The film is streaming on Netflix now.

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