Knight & Day (2011)


You’d be forgiven for thinking that a spy film with the likes of Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz could do no wrong, and indeed that’s the view I had, how wrong I was. Despite a fantastic performance from Diaz, Knight & Day falls well short.

There have been numerous comedy spy capers over the years, some of which have been fantastic, like Johnny English and Get Smart for example and others which have been less than stellar; Mr. & Mrs. Smith comes to mind. Unfortunately Knight & Day fits in between the good and the bad and comes out distinctly average.

Problems blight the film from the off stemming from wobbly CGI to ridiculous stunts and lazy direction choices, it seems like director James Mangold went into this project a little half-heartedly.

Tom Cruise plays spy Roy Miller and the film follows his adventures across the globe protecting the elusive ‘Zephyr’ battery which apparently never runs out of power. Needless to say Cameron Diaz plays the ditzy blonde who later becomes the love interest for the film. Whilst Diaz provides a fun and exciting performance, providing many of the movie’s best comedic moments, Cruise feels seriously miscast in a humorous role and he becomes tiresome to watch.

Alas, the issues don’t stop there. For an action film, it’s distinctly lacking in action and the set pieces that are there are lazily choreographed or rendered in shoddy CGI. Considering its less than modest budget (£120m), Knight & Day should’ve been a joy to watch, instead it’s like looking at a TV programme for 109 minutes.

Meanwhile the villains in the film are simply cardboard cut-outs as the writers haven’t given enough thought to fleshing out their characters. Cruise simply points and shoots and bang, they’re dead.

However, all of these problems could’ve been forgiven if the film had some great storytelling – it doesn’t. What should’ve been the best parts of the film are blacked out. The escapes, the fighting and even some of the ending are lost as Mangold decides to get around inexplicable plot events by drugging the main characters. Again, this is a lazy technique which doesn’t work.

It’s a shame, as there are many reasons why this film should’ve been at least a good summer action flick. In reality, Knight & Day simply becomes passable at best with some inexcusably lazy direction choices, dreadful CGI, bad casting and flimsy characters which all add up to a film which is left hanging on the merits of Cameron Diaz.

Category

Scoring /10

Story/Plot

6

Acting

7

Special Effects/Cinematography

4

Soundtrack

5

Costume Design

5

Script/Dialogue

4

TOTAL /60

31

Overall: A poor effort which wastes the talents of its stars.

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