When former James Bond Pierce Brosnan and former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko return to the world of foreign espionage in ‘The November Man,’ is it a hit or a miss with spy thriller aficionados?
“Peter Devereaux, you know what we used to call you? The November Man ‘cause after you passed through, nothing lived.”
That is hands down one of the most badass quotes used in a movie trailer I’ve seen in a while. However, I don’t think the trailer for Relativity Media’s The November Man does it justice. Based loosely upon the novel There Are No Spies by Bill Granger, the film had an interesting plot in that Peter Devereaux (Pierce Brosnan) is an ex-CIA operative forced out of retirement to embark upon one final personal mission that finds him pitted against high-ranking CIA officials, the Russian president-elect Arkady Federov (Lazar Ristovski) and his former protégé David Mason (Luke Bracey), who is like the hot-headed, impetuous son Devereaux never had. Devereaux’s mission is to find and protect a former refugee who may hold the secrets to the Russian president-elect’s political undoing and the unraveling of a decades-old conspiracy.
Of course I knew Brosnan had been James Bond in fan favorites GoldenEye, Die Another Day, Tomorrow Never Dies and The World Is Not Enough, but I didn’t realize the film’s leading lady Alice (Olga Kurylenko) had been a former Bond girl starring opposite Daniel Craig in Quantum of Solace. While this film tries really, really hard to be a smart, sleek and sexy spy thriller in the vein of James Bond, it comes up a little short of the prize. Like any other movie in this genre, there are a plethora of swerves along the way – some of them you will see coming a mile away because they’re that clichéd, while others may take you by surprise. If you go into this blindly and aren’t bothered by the foreign names and accents that are sometimes difficult to follow, the confusing and at times unnecessary plot twists, the sometimes uncomfortable scenarios and the fact that this far removed from the Cold War I don’t think anybody really cares about Russian politics anymore, then you should be fine.