2023. R. 114 mins. Directed by Guy Ritchie
Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre is the latest movie from director Guy Ritchie. Keeping in line with the majority of his filmography this another action/thriller with a touch of comedy. This time around we follow Orson Fortune (Jason Statham) and his team (Aubrey Plaza, Cary Elwes and Bugzy Malone) as they try to recruit one of Hollywood's biggest movie stars, Danny Francesco (Josh Hartnett), to help them on an undercover mission. They are trying to stop the sale of a deadly new weapons technology run by billionaire Greg Simmonds (Hugh Grant) as the fate of the world is at stake.
It is very clear that Guy Ritchie likes to stick to this genre of movies. Every once in a while he'll make a Swept Away or an Aladdin but he knows what he does best, make slick action movies with a nice dose of comedy. Operation Fortune walks a fine line between the action and comedy, while maybe relying a little too much on the comedy at times. As you'll get with any movie starring Jason Statham this is an action packed thrill ride and Ritchie does not shy away from getting into some ridiculous territory. That being said the action is all shot competently well and is a lot of fun.
There are some pacing issues throughout the run time. Some action sequences feel a little too long and there are a few moments that feel like they could have been cut to tighten up the story. A lot of the jokes don't hit all that well but there are still plenty of humorous moments that even things out. The biggest problem with the movie is there is never a sense of danger for the main characters. Sure they get into many shootouts and are in situations that could cause them harm but it never really feels like they might not make it to the end. They never quite feel invincible but with everything these characters go through things tend to go a little too perfectly for them.
Jason Statham has built a nice career out of essentially playing the same character in almost every movie he's made. While he is always typecast he does play this type of character extremely well and here is no different. One of the biggest standouts in the cast is Aubrey Plaza. Seeing her get to show off her action chops is a breath of fresh air from the type of roles she typically plays. Josh Hartnett is funny throughout as the goofy comic relief even though he is laying it on a bit too much in certain scenes. Hugh Grant makes for a convincing villain getting to be both intense yet funny at the same time. Both Cary Elwes and Bugzy Malone are nice additions to the cast however they don't get quite as much to do as the rest.
Overall, Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre is an action packed and solidly entertaining. It is a mid tier movie from Guy Ritchie but that's not to say that it isn't enjoyable. Despite some missteps there is plenty to like and it is definitely worth checking out when it hits theaters.