It’s one thing to play off a classic movie and tweak it; it’s another to dress up your actors in vintage costumes and forego the essential irony that you need when re-making a period film. In “Allied,” Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard play the parts of intrepid allied undercover agents in Casablanca, pretending to be husband wife but really there to assassinate the German commander of Vichy during World War II. They are both superb eye candy but Brad has never been duller, even when wielding a machine gun and speaking French. Marion has the kind of face the camera melts into so she will hold your interest a while longer. But at the moment when the plot thickens, this movie disintegrates so that instead of being a thriller, it becomes prosaically predictable with too many familiar tropes that lack cleverness.
The Times critic summoned the name Hitchcock and one can only assume that he was DUI either while viewing or reviewing this film since it is the antithesis of what the master of suspense was about. Once the audience is alerted to the possibility of a more malevolent plot, there are no further surprises or shocks - not one MacGuffin to throw you off track. You will figure out the end ten minutes before it happens and that won’t really matter because the actors are more models than characters with any dimension. I hate to sound as cynical as W.C. Fields but even the baby is a bore. You can tell how phony the screenplay is when you have the mother of a one year old inviting a horde of people to her London house for a party where in 1942, there is smack, sex and lesbianism on display. The baby sleeps through it all - I told you she was a bore.
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