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Ghosted review: Chris Evans and Ana de Armas' chemistry may have been lost in post

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Hollywood could learn a lesson from Apple TV+’s action romcom pale: If you want to tell the story of a scholar who falls for a spy’s hoax, don’t cast Captain America as a normal person. This is asking too much of your audience. You can’t introduce us to Chris Evans as a guy named Cole Reigns (certainly churned out by the “big, tough manly” name generator) and then argue that he’s going to kick Ana de Armas’ ass. Marne is the opposite of Sadie, a CIA operative. , When Evans falls, he doesn’t flail his limbs like us mere mortals. When she has to pose as a noble agent and break bread with an enemy (Adrien Brody’s LeVeque), she has a smile on her face that reads a little too confident, a little too in control. You don’t understand that this man sweats too.

Evans spent so many years flexing his muscles and his charisma in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and was so at home playing a suave superhero, it’s as if he couldn’t help but channel that persona whenever the action kicks off. I come back. It’s completely different from the kind of film director Dexter Fletcher is trying to make — which doesn’t mean that Evans is necessarily the source of the film’s flaws. Cole is characterized so little that all he can really do is tell his character out loud. “I’m a farmer!” “I don’t like wearing suits!” Nothing about him is believable.

Cole is supposedly a guy who has never left the country (it’s funny how this movie treats his lack of international travel as a dating red flag), and who is habitually very needy and very troubled in his relationships. Is. He meets Sadie at a market stall (de Armas comes back in no time to die And the gray man mode, except this time she has a bad wig), whose job requires that she abandon all long-term commitments and emotional investments. The two of them argue about how often you should water houseplants, though they’re really arguing about how much of a relationship can flourish without constant attention.

They have a single date and Cole is shocked when his subsequent texts go unanswered (hence the title of the film). In order to become complicit in Sadie’s detective work, he boards a plane to London to try to track Sadie down. And everywhere they go and everyone they meet, it is always remarked that Cole and Sadie have sexual chemistry. “You two need to get a room” is said at least five or six times. After a point, it starts to feel like pale Trying to brainwash your audience. There’s no chemistry, sexual or otherwise. Evans and de Armas have made a charismatic pairing during palepress tour, but their film doesn’t seem to understand that an “opposites attract” story requires passionate disagreement—not the mildly irascible, “I’d like to speak to your manager” energy that both actors drawn from.

about everything else pale Feels like filler: the unnecessary amount of celebrities called upon for cameos, Brody’s farcical but elegantly dressed villain, and a trio of action sequences soundtracked to arbitrary pop hits. It does not matter. pale Fell at the very first hurdle.

Director: Dexter Fletcher. Starring: Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Adrien Brody, Mike Moh, Tim Blake Nelson, Marwan Kenzari, Anna Devere Smith. 12, 116 min.

‘Ghosted’ Streaming on Apple TV+