We are no strangers to a comic book franchise. With the likes of Marvel, DC and plenty of others attempting to show what they can produce, there is something eerily similar about them all. “The Old Guard” takes the tropes of this genre of films but plays about with them. We still have the big fight scenes and the inevitable end, but the story flowed well and did a sufficient job in explaining along the way. The subject that set this apart was how this looks at these characters in a different way.
Following four immortal humans, they can’t die, can’t age but their immortality is portrayed as a curse rather than a strength. For these characters they have had to live through years of change, fighting for what is right, even if they don’t get any recognition for it. Constantly on the run, this is a life you wouldn’t want to wish onto anyone.
The main antagonist within the film doesn’t work. Unfortunately for the actor Harry Melling, more well known for ‘Dudley’ from Harry Potter, there wasn’t much he could do with this poorly written character. It’s one we’ve seen before, and is very difficult to get right, the young rich villain or spoiled brat in other words. He’s just not menacing enough, the stakes feel lowered at times affecting the impact on the story.
Charlize Theron is the main focus. As always she commands the screen, just like she does this team. This is a character that has lived through many a year, with so much experience but a lifetime of demons she is fighting. However, all those years come in handy, especially when getting into battle. She kicks ass, taking on more than any normal warrior should be able to take, providing some of the best action sequences of the film.
Action sequences are something there is a decent amount of. There is a good variety throughout, and mostly well shot and choreographed. One scene in particular took on a sequence where our main characters would pass over each enemy they came across in a smooth and satisfying string of combat moves. At times some of the scenes could be a little messy, not always packing the punch they intended to, but entertaining nonetheless.
Occasionally occupying these moments was a selection of music choices. These were sometimes questionable, they didn’t quite match the moment or tone this film was trying to emulate. Throw in an original score, or more defined song choices would’ve elevated this film to another level.
Going into this blind made this an enjoyable experience. With no expectations the story is elevated, the characters aren’t disappointing and going forward it’s exciting to see where the world can go…