The reviews are in for Matthew Vaughn’s “Argylle” and the reaction is not good.

Bryce Dallas Howard stars as Elly Conway, a reclusive but successful author who finds the plots of her fictional best-selling espionage novels, about a secret agent named Argylle and his mission to unravel a global spy syndicate, begin to mirror the covert actions of a real-life spy organization.

Soon, Elly and cat-allergic spy Aiden (Sam Rockwell) race across the world to stay one step ahead of the killers as the line between Elly’s fictional world and her real one begins to blur. The film plays out scenes from her books on screen with Henry Cavill as agent Argylle.

With 73 reviews counted on Rotten Tomatoes, the film stands at just 34% (5.1/10) amongst critics with complaints running the gamut from pacing to bad CG to serious structural issues as it piles on twist after twist.

It’s a similar assessment at Metacritic where the film landed a 40/100. Check out a sampling of review quotes below:

“By the time an end-credits flashback tries to surprise-contextualize all that’s come before, the pattern has left our eyes irreparably crossed.” – Peter DeBruge, Variety

“The studio has asked critics not to reveal the multiple plot twists. This is unsurprising, since those twists underscore the weakness of the screenplay: It’s constantly pulling the rug out from under viewers, only to reveal no floor underneath.” – Alonso Duralde, The Film Verdict

“The movie disappoints by fumbling away most of its wins and piling on double- and triple-crosses and other trappings of a bespoke espionage world.” – Brian Truitt, USA Today

“It’s remarkable really, “Argylle” has bone-deep structural issues on a fundamental level, but it is also a failure of directorial execution from top to bottom, resulting in what has to be one of the most expensive worst movies ever made.” – Katie Walsh, Tribune News Service

“There is far too much CGI. It goes on for half an hour longer than even the most tolerant Vaughn fan will allow. And yet. Howard is so irrepressibly charming that Argylle proves hard to wholly resist.” – Donald Clarke, Irish Times

“What went wrong here? It’s probably just plain old exhaustion. Argylle marks the fifth film that Vaughn has made in this mode (I’m counting Kick-Ass), and he seems out of tricks.” – Richard Lawson, Vanity Fair

“Vaughn’s juvenile sense of humor is a poor match for the rom-com energy of Fuchs’ script, and the director only seems further declawed by the decision to make this movie PG-13.” – David Ehrlich, indieWire

“It all starts to feel like one of those very expensive, very elaborate commercials for a pseudo-luxury product you don’t want to buy – a perfume perhaps, or some car.” – Leslie Felperin, Hollywood Reporter

“The rectangle of the screen itself seems to bend and twist into a giant self-satisfied smirk for an unbearably smug caper from director Matthew Vaughn.” – Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

“The film is a caper whose lack of charm prevents it from transcending the thinness of its high-concept premise.” – Jake Cole, Slant Magazine

“Argylle” opens in cinemas around the world on Friday.

The post The “Argylle” Reviews Are In appeared first on Dark Horizons.

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