Classical filmmaking. So this a story that takes place in World War II. An intelligence officer (Brad Pitt) meets up with a French Resistance fighter (Marion Cotillard), and they end up falling for each other and getting married. Trouble is that after the fact, it surfaces internally that she might actually be a Nazi spy, which could very well complicate things as you can probably imagine. I actually ended up liking this movie a whole lot. I don’t use this word a whole lot, but I can’t deny the fact that it applies here: this movie is Hitchcockian. It knows how to work tension and it leaves you second guessing what you thought to be true, and for that, Allied is a largely successful effort.
The only thing it wasn’t successful at was Brad Pitt’s marriage to Angelina Jolie.
This is from Robert Zemeckis, and now that he has gotten all of that creepy motion capture out of his system, I really like the movies that he is making. I thought The Walk was well done, I really loved Flight, and he has done it again with Allied, which is a very mature movie by his standards. Now you could make an argument that Brad Pitt just really loves killing Nazis, being that this is coming after Inglourious Basterds and Fury, but the one thing I will say is that it feels like he is playing a different character every single time. He’s not country in this, he’s as smooth as can be, and you can see the charisma always brewing in the character. He has really good chemistry with Cotillard, and you buy that they would get involved in this romance, even with the scrutiny that they would have to face, given the circumstances. It gets really sexy in a classy way, and once you get to the sandstorm scene, you will totally see what I am talking about.
It’s their movie to sell, and they step up to the plate in a big way.
What makes this movie so stellar is the scenes of tension. You are on pins and needles every time that they get themselves into a tough spot, and it gets extremely exciting. The stakes are high, and the sense of doubt is always there. At one point I thought I had this movie completely mapped out, but it ended up going in a completely different direction, but I suppose that is my own fault for following a red herring. Allied is smart, but easy to keep up with, and it is like an old school Hollywood thriller with a modern day movie budget. Doesn’t that just sound like everything you want out of a romantic thriller?
Allied (2016) ****
– Critic for Hire
Want to see where this fell in my list of best films of the 2016? See for yourself here.