Dir: David Leitch 1hr 55mins (15) Introducing a new action hero
This “sexy, violent and cool” thriller stars Charlize Theron as a British spy sent to 1980s Berlin to recover a missing microfilm, said Jamie East in The Sun. There she runs into a French agent (Sofia Boutella), with whom she has a passionate fling, and an unhinged MI6 station chief (James McAvoy). But who, if anyone, is to be trusted? The plot and characters are “superficial”, said Geoffrey Macnab in The Independent. Yet for sheer entertainment value, Atomic Blonde can’t be faulted. There are some brilliant fight scenes between the “cartoonishly indestructable” Theron and her opponents. Best of all is a ten-minute scene in which Theron battles her way down a staircase through a cluster of KGB agents, said Kevin Maher in The Times. It’s “one of the most exhilarating sequences committed to film this year”. Admittedly, the film’s plot is derivative, said Tim Robey in The Daily Telegraph, with its sub-Le Carré smoke and mirrors. But it’s worth seeing for Theron’s action masterclass. She makes Jason Bourne and James Bond “look like a mild-mannered kindergarten teacher and the school’s arthritic janitor, respectively”.