BULLSEYE OR MISFIRE: The November Man Reviews
By Dr. Know on August 28th, 2014
Director Roger Donaldson has had his ups and downs over the past few years; the script for this lodges somewhere in the middle, though he compensates for its lack of distinction through sheer velocity and nimble negotiation of its hairpin turns.
If it doesn’t transcend its genre origins, I suspect it’s because it doesn’t want to.
When The November Man stays pulpy, its cheesier aspects-like a low-rent supporting cast and a gratuitous sex scene-seem like par for the course. When it turns more serious, so do its failings.
As far as escapist fluff laced with totally unnecessary real-world horror goes, The November Man isn’t wretched.
The utter lack of originality eventually sinks the movie, and the climax has more howlers than a wolf convention.
The plot is so convoluted that it’s almost always hard to tell what is at stake and what each side is trying to accomplish.
Donaldson’s film contains some of the most perplexing espionage tactics ever devised for the silver screen.
The November Man is diligently executed, and Brosnan gives a fine performance as an action hero who can convey a character’s thought processes as well as deliver a punch.
While maintaining the mystery is key to a movie like this, and while the set-up necessitates numerous overlapping threads, there are far too many and it proves to be a fatal distraction.
Even more disastrous is the film’s treatment of women who are seen almost entirely as either sex objects or foils for men to play off of. A woman’s only use in this film is to advance the plot by making mistakes.
Brosnan is past 60; his director Roger Donaldson is just shy of 70. If you’d like to see a movie about the limitations of being young and inexperienced, this is it.
Even if you’re dying to see it, I bet you can wait until it hits video in a couple months.
Lifeless dialogue spoken by guys trying to look tough and sound tough with only one of them succeeding (the other one is Luke Bracey).
The November Man is unable to make heads or tails of how to establish an interesting storyline. It is one of the most monumentally dull trips you could possibly have at the cinema this year.
Might be the most irresponsibly dumb spy thriller I’ve seen in some time.
Roger Donaldson embellishes an already overly plotty scenario with hollowly attractive genre superfluities.
There is a great amount of confusion about the central character in The November Man, which is quite at odds with the character himself.
Barely reaches the standard of a generic throw-away thriller, with a sub-par storyline and painfully tiresome dialog.
There’s no excuse for how boring and incomprehensible so much of The November Man is.