image004What’s it all about?

In the early 1960s, CIA agent Napoleon Solo and KGB operative Illya Kuryakin participate in a joint mission against a mysterious criminal organization, which is working to proliferate nuclear weapons.

Thus was The Man From U.N.C.L.E. born.

Well men. And a woman.

Why did I want to see it?

Well, I actually wasn’t sure that I did. I loved the TV series which I watched at every opportunity when I was a kid. So the idea of a film made me a bit nervous. The cast sounded good, ditto the 1960s setting (as opposed to a reboot set in the present day). But then I saw the trailer and I was put off a bit, but then I heard an interview with Armie Hammer which made it sound fun, so after much dithering (not entirely uncharacteristic) I decided to go, and threw caution to the wind by booking to see it in IMAX. Good call.

What did I think of it?

As I said above, I went in with middling expectations but I was pleasantly surprised. I thought it was huge fun, fast and exciting with the right balance of humour and gadgets and cold war shenanigans. The cast are really good with that wonderful mix of accents you get when you have an Englishman playing an American, an American playing a Russian and a Swede playing a German. Oh, and Hugh Grant is there being suave. Everyone is very dashing, Rome looks gorgeous and there’s a wonderful female villain doing the usual world domination thing with her own island and a plot about nuclear weapons.

But for me it was all about the clothes. The clothes were truly wonderful. The men (apart from Armie Hammer who was being Russian in turtlenecks and bomber jackets) were in fabulous suits. Henry Cavill in particular knows how to wear a suit well and just looked impossibly handsome. But the women, oh my. Alicia Vikander wears a wonderful selection of sixties dresses and enormous sunglasses and jewellery, and Elizabeth Debicki is dressed entirely in black and white with huge rings and an astonishing selection of necklaces and bracelets. And the make-up – just so glamorous. Irresistible.

So, great clothes, fast cars, fast boats, Vespas, glamorous locations and gentlemen spies. Such a hoot. Who knew Guy Ritchie had it in him. I only missed the ghost of David McCallum’s Kuryakin for about 5 minutes. I really really hope they’ll make a sequel.