Ana de Armas and Chris Evans star in the action-romantic comedy Ghosted, which premieres April 21 on Apple TV+. Our writer got a preview of the film.
As soon as the tension rises, it’s a matter of life or death, and there’s a hail of punches and kicks, Ana de Armas is in her element: the 34-year-old already has her talent for action in the Bond film “No time to die” and on Netflix spy thriller The Gray Man, and does so in the Apple TV+ original Ghosted, in which she plays an infamous CIA agent codenamed The Taxman. In one of the film’s best scenes, her character, Sadie, confiscates a bus while fleeing terrorists, and speeds backwards at breakneck speed through narrow, winding mountain roads while being pursued by several trigger-happy men in SUVs. If “Ghosted” revolved around nothing else than the numerous violent confrontations that the spy solves in a sovereign, clever and imaginative way, one could recommend the streaming title without reservation. But the film’s creators, absurdly, decided to relegate the grandiose action to a side element in a boring romance between Sadie and the idealistic farmer Cole (Chris Evans). (also interesting:Harry Styles, Chris Evans, The Rock: These male celebrities are taking a stand against toxic masculinity
What is teased is stalked
The two meet at a weekly market, where the tough career woman wants advice on buying an easy-care houseplant. Disappointed in love, Cole is initially sensitive to Sadie’s solitary nature, but still has the courage to ask her out. In fact, the film manages to conjure up a compelling attraction between the two very different singles that doesn’t consist in the fulfillment of a hypothetical ideal or as much common ground as possible; rather, the two seem to like each other because they are willing to be vulnerable and stand by their views and feelings, even when the other person disagrees. After spending a whole day together, the two finally end up in bed together, well thought out and sober – commendable, but unfortunately also somehow boring. (Aside from that:These 30 Apple TV series won over the critics
But that doesn’t mean that “Ghosted” doesn’t have problematic features. After all, even the undeniable attractiveness and charm of Chris Evans cannot hide the obsessive and psychopathic nature of meeting someone you met once and then never speaking to them again (hence the film’s title). to secretly follow him to another continent (because he was located there by GPS) and to surprise him there. Even if this element of the premise is probably intended to be funny, because this clingy and deluded behavior is usually attributed to women, but here the role stereotypes are reversed, many a woman will probably reassure herself after watching her front door twice locked inside.
Great guest appearances
Arriving in London, Cole is drugged and kidnapped by two mysterious men. When he comes to, he finds himself inside a mountain, faced by a terrorist who is looking for a bioweapon and mistakes Cole for the taxman. Enter Sadie, who not only has to take out the bad guys and find the gun before they do, but also protect and bring home her devoted One Night Stand. At this point in the film we are somewhere in predominantly Muslim Southeast Asia. As in real life, everything depends on the woman.
Pretty much every supporting character, from Cole’s cynical sister (Lizze Broadway), to Sadie’s sleazy ex-lover (Marwan Kenzari), the villain (Adrien Brody), and the villain’s right-hand man (Mike Moh), even Sadie’s supposed colleague Elena, who we are only told turned out to be a mole and was killed by Sadie is drawn in a more exciting way than the romantic hero of this film. By far the best characters in this action rom-com are the eccentric bounty hunters who follow Sadie and Cole in the marketplace, played by Anthony Mackie, John Cho and Sebastian Stan. The sequence is probably the most successful and also a flawlessly staged series of guest appearances that have ever existed in a three-minute film.
Deprived of a better film
The worst thing a romantic comedy can be is mediocre. Unfortunately, the Apple TV+ original is guilty of precisely this crime, despite the fact that the film boasts an impressive cast of Chris Evans, Ana de Armas and Adrien Brody and an impressive crew of Dexter Fletcher and Rhett Reese and Chris McKenna. However, how one can come up with the idea of making a comedy about gender roles in 2023, in which not a single female screenwriter is involved (but four men are involved), remains a mystery.
The RomCom lacks both the social relevance of its genre colleagues “The Big Sick” or “Friends with Benefits”, as well as the entertainment factor of clichéd Netflix originals like “A Christmas Prince” or “Falling Inn Love”. While the viewer of the latter type of film knows at least from the outset what he is getting for his attention, “Ghosted” itself does not really seem to know what kind of film it wants to be – and for whom. Because neither the romantic nor the comedic aspect of the story seem inspired. As dazzling as Chris Evans and Ana de Armas are in every role they play, to be honest, this film is stuck in gender roles that tell us little that is new. (Also read:These are the 10 best original movies on Apple TV+ )