Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
The Man from U.N.C.L.E. plays like a lower key, vintage edition of a Mission: Impossible movie. It's a good movie with a great look.
Exactly no one was asking for this. So it's a surprise to discover that the bar for this movie is low enough to conga under.
New York Post:
Cavill's Solo, and the movie, are aggressively quippy, which is what happens when screenwriters set out to be funny but give up when they're halfway there.
An unusually restrained Guy Ritchie serves up solid entertainment with a classy touch, but bland leads and no-sizzle chemistry make this slick '60s TV adaptation forgettable.
The Man From U.N.C.L.E. feels fun even when it lacks a particular reason for existing.
It almost works. Actually, it does work, hitting the requisite number of hip notes. It just doesn't dazzle, and that's kind of a surprise.
"Man" is a celebration of a time when secret agents dressed impeccably, bantered with style, and had exceptionally cool toys. That the movie is almost instantly forgettable is part of the pleasure.
J. R. Jones,
Whose idea was it to make a cold war thriller for a generation that doesn't know what the cold war was?
Composer Daniel Pemberton's evocations of early '60s "danger" music respect the period, which is more than can be said for Ritchie's hatchet-style of staging and editing.
While it looks good - Ritchie has always been a slick visual stylist - it's ultimately as passive as an old rerun.
Long on style but short on substance, Guy Ritchie's ring-a-ding-ding Cold War spy thriller attempts to resurrect a mothballed '60s TV series the way that Mission: Impossible did. It doesn't work this time.
Dallas Morning News:
It's got all the ingredients - improbable romances, partial nudity, ridiculous escapes - that make it little more than big-sound and big-picture fodder for the Imax screens it will appear on throughout the country.
Los Angeles Times:
It all winds up feeling hollow and even slightly oppressive, an enforced sense of fun jabbed within quotation marks. It aims for a silky lightness of touch but lands like a dropped slab of concrete.
Not an update of the old TV show but a revival, with dazzling sets, period outfits and wonderfully implausible action. It's an Atomic Age blast.
As for Cavill, let us just say that the line between phlegmatic suavity and downright dullness is rather more easily breached than the Berlin Wall.
What substance it has could be dissolved in a shot glass. But so what?
New York Daily News:
It's slow, lethargic, utterly lacking in charm and undeserving of the Cold War setting that is its best trait.
New York Times:
Guy Ritchie makes the kind of enjoyably disreputable movies that are fun to watch until they're not.
Alas, the movie doesn't fulfil the tease of the opening sequence. From there it devolves into a series of revelations with diminishing returns.
A lot of energy and effort has gone into this endeavor, and I can't say some of it's not fun. But more of it, alas, is just tedious.
This is one of those rare instances when a sequel wouldn't just be warranted - it would be welcomed.
A moldy 1960s TV series that comes to the screen with no Mission: Impossible update or makeover. That's right - it's still moldy. But in a way that's escapist, retro fun.
San Francisco Chronicle:
Ritchie is a director with no instinct for the audience, and he can't hold things together for an entire film. He seems at a loss, from moment to moment, as to what he should emphasize.
This is like an Austin Powers movie directed by Wes Anderson, although Ritchie's personal style is very much in evidence.
With brisk pacing, and a cast this attractive parading the kinds of fashions that will remind you how much you miss Mad Men, most of the movie boasts a Mod crispness.
U.N.C.L.E. has enough style and smarts to make it an amusingly louche summer movie: a cultivated mix of action and wit, suits and cities.
As stylish as it is witty, Guy Ritchie's retro spy movie, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., is a lovable lark and full of mischief.
The Cold War returns full force on the big screen, though by the end of The Man from U.N.C.L.E., you might want to put it back in the fridge.
Though it's made with lots of modern tricks and technology, it's old-fashioned in the best sense, and not just because it's set in the Sixties.
The threat that this mess of a movie might be followed by a sequel is enough to make anyone cry uncle.