The Gray Man: Not Just Another Action Flick

The Gray Man: Not Just Another Action Flick

Netflix’s “The Gray Man” premieres on July 22



The churn out of movies recently has been next-level; you can barely recover from one film before another one is released, and you’re trying to carve out the time that will allow you to immerse yourself in it fully. Maybe it’s because production is at full force following the pandemic, but it also has a lot to do with streaming-turned-production-companies like Netflix. And The Gray Man is just the latest in their roster.



The Gray Man: A Synopsis

In the film, a top CIA asset uncovers the agency’s secrets, and what follows is a global hunt for him and all his colleagues. This CIA asset is known only to some by the name of Six (Ryan Gosling), though his past and what he’s done since joining the agency has no paper trail to speak of. And now that he’s about to shed some light on Big Brother, shit’s about to go down.


Six pisses off Denny Carmichael (Bridgerton’s Regé-Jean Page) during an operation, with the latter correctly assuming Six got hold of some confidential information he does not want leaked to the public (or the CIA). Stumped for options, Carmichael hires Lloyd Hansen (Chris Evans) to find, chase and kill Six—by any means necessary.


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First thoughts

After seeing the trailer, I couldn’t really help but utter: “Wow, another action movie with Chris Evans. Wow, Ryan Gosling as the loner with a wicked past; so mind-blowing.” But honestly, the film proved me wrong; it is so much more than the action and its actors.



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The Gray Man is not just an action flick with some of the most sellable Hollywood names. It is equal parts gripping and heartwarming, with enough of a storyline to keep its audiences interested throughout the film. Unlike most macho movies, there isn’t a singular linear story to follow that is only delayed by a femme fatale and some boys with guns fighting. There are multiple narratives to follow, and each one is interesting on its own.


You have Gosling’s Six who—granted—is that loner with a wicked past, but he’s not unbreakable. Page’s Carmichael makes me want to kick in that beautiful face of his. Evan’s Lloyd is so arrogantly frustrating that I honestly found myself saying “This is not Chris Evans;” that trashstache, those too-tight tops, cropped pants and loafers were too much for me. And, of course, there was Ana de Armas’ Dani Miranda, who actually took the time to question WTF was happening in her life, took the necessary steps to find out, and made her own decisions based on that.



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I try to keep these things spoiler-free, but this is your “incoming spoiler alert” warning. Three, two, one…Ryan Gosling's Six was robbed his moment of poetic justice. Robbed.


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And the verdict

Honestly, The Gray Man made me wish that Netflix movies could be watched on the big screen. It’s that kind of film, you know? It deserves, at the very least, blackout curtains, surround sound, no bathroom breaks and a bowl of your favorite movie eats. But hey, at least Netflix doesn’t judge us for wearing our PJs and spilling drinks on ourselves, huh?



“The Gray Man” premieres on July 22 on Netflix Philippines.



Art Macky Arquilla


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