The Old Guard (2020) Review – They are Extremely Resistant to Capture


Recently, Netflix has been bombarding it’s online platform with Cool Superhero-Flix and Series.  The Old Guard, starring Charlize Theron, marketed as a Netflix Movie, is also a superhero film that has its own realistic image.

The action sequences look real and the integration of VFX has been kept minimal, maybe to give a realistic approach to the genre. The film sits patiently with these moments, putting the same level of importance on the characters and their emotions as it does on the action.

“These are extraordinary individuals. They are extremely resistant to capture.”

The Story

The Old Guard tells the tale of a pack of immortal human beings, led by Andy (Charlize Theron) who work as private mercenaries, doing the good work, which the CIA or other government bodies should have done. But they have their own rules and their own superpower which pops in the eye of the outer world. The desire to immorality is not among humans, and they can go to any extent to reap that benefit, but the curse of immorality can only be understood by those who have been through that hell.

“Just because we keep living doesn’t mean we stop hurting.”

The film begins with Andy, who is the eldest member of an elite band of people who appear to be immortal. Soon this squad of four is about to be joined by a fifth member, Nile (KiKi Layne), a Marine stationed in Afghanistan whose slit throat suddenly heals itself. She is also plagued by nightmarish visions of other team members, a psychic link that connects the immortals. After a skeptical Niki joins the gang, Andy and her pack are hunted by a Pharma Lord, in order to get the secrets of immortality and sell it for his own interests.

Charlize Theron As Andy

Theron’s ability to weld both acting and action skills, were already witnessed in Mad Max: Fury Road and in “The Old Guard”, she demonstrates the same charm.  Such sensibility and ace performance in a character in a superhero movie is both rare and unexpected. Joker being the last film to encompass such layers. I’m sure one will be impressed by Charlize Theron’s performance, and if not, then her charm would get the job done.

A Realistic Superhero Movie

The Old Guard has been adapted by writer Greg Rucks from the graphic novel of the same name, the series that was quite different in the superhero genre, and the same is visible in the film itself.

For the same reason, I believe, that it contains more dramatic sequences than most superhero movies, “The Old Guard” doesn’t drag on the good, old-fashioned violence. Combat scenes are filmed so you can see who’s doing what, and edited together for maximum carnage that makes them raw and real.

“We don’t have all the answers but we do have a purpose.”

Most of the film moves forward with dialogues rather than urgency of the scenes, which becomes quite tiring sometimes, but it feels more real, and was in a way, budget friendly to it’s creators who want to give more content in a superhero flick, rather than just filling it with occasionally hero-villain combats.

“The Old Guard” doesn’t have the strict fan base of the Marvel and DC movies, but this is an excellent example of what this type of film can be, one I hope will be studied by the much bigger-budgeted tent-poles you know and love. Even the “post-credits” teaser— is really gripping and infatuates users to eagerly wait for the next installment in the series.

The Old Guard directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood and written by Greg Rucka is a 2020 American superhero film, streaming on Netflix.

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Shikhar Agrawal
I am an Onstage Dramatist and a Screenwriter. I have been working in the Indian Film Industry for the past 12 years, writing dialogues for various films and television shows.

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