When a mysterious device is stolen, MI6 needs to act urgently. Calling upon a highly skilled team, they task them with not only retrieving the stolen item but also learning the secret identity of who stole it, who’s looking at buying it and a full understanding of their intentions. MI6 first call upon Nathan Jasmine (Cary Elwes), who is briefed on the new situation and the possible threat against the entire world. Nathan requests none other than Orson Fortune (Jason Statham) as his team leader, who is currently on holiday and is hugely displeased to find his services have been called upon during his rest and recovery. Joining them both is another agent, Sarah (Aubrey Plaza), and an agent Orson is familiar with and has worked with on multiple missions, JJ Davies (Bugzy Malone). Starting with their first clue, the team begin the ultimate hunt to save the world from disaster; however, they soon discover they’re not the only team tasked with the same mission.
Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre carries a mixed genre of comedy and action and a strong touch of mystery. The film is straightforward in its plot and story: a team must save the world, encountering a few surprises along the way. The snappy fast-spoken dialogue, the filming style and the introduction that gets the plot underway instantly are all familiar aspects of Guy Ritchie’s style. Besides these familiar aspects, we also have actors who love working with the director, such as leading actor Jason Statham.
I found this film to be loads of fun for most of the runtime, and it carries a playful and entertaining vibe right from the start, with only the final moments starting to drag on longer than I preferred. It’s not a complex film, and it stays in a safe place, never pushing the boundaries. Nor is it over the top with its action or comedy compared to some of Guy Ritchie’s previous spy films, such as The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
The chemistry among the cast is excellent. While Jason Statham is doing something familiar, he brings plenty of action and one-liners that are played for laughs. Aubrey Plaza was a massive highlight for me as she also shines strongly with her comedic timing and charming personality. Cary Elwes has a likeable presence on screen, and his dialogue delivery is excellent, especially when he shares the odd banter with Jason Statham. Sadly, like in Wrath of Man, Josh Hartnett is a weaker aspect for me, but thankfully I found his time on-screen fitting. It should come as no surprise that Hugh Grant is, once again, fantastic.
Overall, while carrying some familiar beats to his previous work, Guy Ritchie delivers another film that successfully entertains fans. The leading cast has excellent chemistry with one another, and even though actor Jason Statham is playing the same kind of lead many have seen before, I found him lots of fun. Aubrey Plaza, Cary Elwes, and Hugh Grant are all having a blast, and I generally loved them in this film. The soundtrack is lively and fantastic, and there’s snappy dialogue and a few fun twists (even if some are predictable), but part of the third act feels too drawn out and more prolonged than ideal. Any faults here are passable and forgiven as movie lovers walk away, still having experienced something light, fun and pleasing. Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre (2022) is Available in Australian Cinemas from January 12th.
9th January 2023
Written by Peter Walkden
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Our opinion on this feature has also been submitted to Rotton Tomatoes (Audiences Score*).