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The 355 2022 Movie Review Poster Trailer Online
The Pace: It’s quick, it moves, it has little time to stop, but does not skip over the important parts to explain the web of deceit the spy business has to offer. The 355 is ready to bring the action genre pace to the front and bring the entertainment modality to the first movie of the theater year. No real slow parts to get lost into, and no real major setup that sometime these movies dwell on to throw you off the pace, just pretty much straight spectacle.
The Fashion: I know, not what a lot of people go for in a movie, but my style of reviews appreciate the wardrobe departments ability to make the outfits our “heroes” will be wearing. Wardrobe for the gang is a blend of stylish, sexy, and deadly that fits exactly what an agent in the field might need, without falling into the drab blend that some movies choose. Wardrobe changes occur quite frequently in the movie, and I loved the attention of detail to the versatility the job required for the girls to accomplish their mission. Sure, there is a bit of a stretch at times, but kudos to the team for picking clothes that fit the situation, go with the culture, and yet strike a chord with the audience who might go see it, especially the party scene.
The Sound Editing/Music Use: Another areas that gets overlooked, the sound editing was fantastic for the movie in regards to balance of dialogue, action and music all sharing the speaker space. The 355 does have the screen filling effects, but it does not approach the decibels that can shatter your ear drums from one viewing. As such, the 355 has the balance between scenes that makes it easy and enjoyable to follow, giving you enough to get pulled into the scene and the enjoyable adrenaline rush that comes with movies like this.
Character Usage: Big starlets, lots of price tags, and shorter time intervals mean lots of potential to skirt over characters and give more of a cameo appearance. Fortunately, the 355 accomplishes balancing the leads quite well, with four of them having adequate screen time, interactions, and contributions to the mission as a whole. One girl eventually gets her due justice, but she is only at the end of the movie, but even then steals much of the show and makes the most of the limited time. Audience members should be very happy with how much screen time the girls get through this movie as they try to decipher the means to obtain the asset. It’s much better than many of the films I’ve seen recently, and that speaks volumes to the reviewer like me.
The Story: It’s not the most engaging story, or the one that breaks your brain, but the 355 has a little more layering and character development than I had originally expected. The mission is very well established from the get go, as the impasses continue to change and pull more pieces into the deadly game of spy chess. There are moments where the stakes of each agent are waged out, and we have a little dive into the psyches of the girls to make them more layered than your typical spy thriller, which of course gets two thumbs up from a guy like me, and should be welcoming to many audience members looking to just chill.
The Action… to an extent: It’s a mixed bag when it comes to action for me given what I’ve read, studied, and enjoyed in the past. However, points to this film for an action that feels very in character with the setting of the mission and the goals the group are trying to accomplish. Most of the tricks are about the espionage components, feeling very familiar to the Oceans’ series in pulling off plans, deceiving the enemy, and finding the means to accomplish the mission when crap hits the fan. However, there are a few moments that pull away from that and not go down the line of too cheesy, or forced as they take on the enemies that littered the locations. It was the ending that hit the levels of action yours truly enjoys with the over the top explosions, the bullet storms that have the sound ripping through the screens, and the choreographed mayhem that if done right sticks in your head. The planning did the job, and though there was much more that could be done, it could have been a lot worse and it worked again well for me.
The Acting: The strongesThe 355 2021 Movie Review Poster Trailer Onlinet aspect of the film is of course the leading ladies making the warrior women aspect come to life without going too far. Bingbing fan is stylish, collected, and honorable, but when it’s time to pull the beast out she hits the choreography amazingly that is just as crisp and precise as her dialogue. Cruz surprised me with the deeper emotions brought out of the group, playing the role assigned quite well, and bringing some improvement that was in line with the character. Diane Kruger is straightforward, but she plays the strong, aggressive role well and nails the mannerisms and choreography of the loose cannon agent role well. That attitude somehow works with the rest of personalities, so well done there. Chastain hits her role well, and I loved much of the tiered acting she pulled off, and the strong keystone she was to the group as a whole. The lovely actress has the look, the attitude, but again manages to impress me with her commitment to the character and managed to reign in the role to not be awful in terms of political levels. My favorite this time though was Lupita Nyong’o, whose character seemed the most balanced of the group and executes her role quite well in terms of comedy, edge, and vulnerability that you hope to see in the a character. Super well done on her part and another fantastic addition to the cast
Predictable: The movie’s got very few surprises, twists, turns, or feints that lack any punches, with too much foreshadowing that is obvious for people to see. The lack of surprises takes away some of the suspense and mystery that spy thrillers thrive on, and makes some of the other issues I had with the movie a little more cringeworthy. There is not much else to say, so let’s move on to.
The Dialogue: I agree with many that the dialogue needs some work, but it’s not the heaping dumpster fire that seems to be the trend . There are moment that are notoriously cheesy, attempts at humor and set up that are just a little to forced, obvious, or saddled in to take away from the effect they were going for. Eventually, the balanced writing starts to get a little too forced towards the political agenda, taking away from the character development and sisterhood in espionage, and more towards how guys suck. At that point, the time commitment to shallow writing does little for other than annoy me. The cheesy dialogue does sort of dilute some of the edge they are looking for, but fortunately is managed well enough to be not as hard of a blow
The Political Turn Of The Movie: Again the movie is decently diluted in the agenda based writing, but somehow takes the turn and drops back into the agenda heavy mode that steals away from the story. I can’t say much as it will ruin the plot of the film, but once that moment happened, the theme shifted and became a little more toxic writing that again does not do anything for a reviewer like me. These moments can be present if done right, but the amount of focus that they took this focus… was a little too much for me.
The Action: While it was fitting at times, the action of 355 is not as impressive as what we have seen in other movies. Some of the moments are a little too streamlined, while others are a bit too forced in terms of the fighting. Even the ending could have used a little more intensity to it, rather than the one sided fight we sort of got. It’s again entertaining enough, but everything starts to feel lackluster as the movie progresses with more pizazz still needed.
The Story At The End: After a great pace and decent balance of story and action, the movie failed in the ending for me and started to tie things up very rapidly in a messy exchange of power and tying up loose ends. There was a great place for them to tie up about 10-15 minutes before the actual ending, but someone decided to rapidly tie things up and it’s okay, but lacking the cohesion the rest of the movie had. When you take this fast approach, all the other dislikes start to get magnified and it seems that the planning lost the foresight it had to run into the issues that it held. Even the camerawork degraded further into a very unstable and shaky mess that robs the action you have been holding out for.
The 355 is a movie with a strong dynamic cast of actresses who play the parts well and look fantastic doing it with the awesome wardrobe selected. It uses its characters well, and crafts a simple story and pace that will agree with many movie goers in how little you had to think. Throw in some decent sound and visual editing, with action that fits decently into the settings they are working in. However, the movie still has a lot of work to do if a sequel is to come. It needs more time to be honest, allowing for character development and individual qualities to come to life the way 70s-90s television did in the past. Second, it needs to work on not rushing the plot and changing the quality to start going more political agenda and aggressive political comedy. In addition the story needs a little more surprises and not as hasty wrap up, so that all the impasses we’ve dodged have the well-deserved ending they are due. Overall, the movie is okay, but lacks the full spectacle that I think it was striving for. Still, it’s a fun one to catch eventually when you have the time.