Free Guy presents Ryan Reynolds as you have seen him many times before, but, thankfully, his shtick hasn’t gotten old yet.


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Free Guy presents Ryan Reynolds as you have seen him many times before, but, thankfully, his shtick hasn’t gotten old yet.


Director(s) Shawn Levy
Screenplay By Matt Lierberman, Zak Penn
Date Released 8/13/2021
Where Can You Watch? In Theaters
Genre(s) Action, Comedy, Romance, Sci-Fi
Duration 1 Hour 55 Minutes
MPAA Rating PG-13
Noted Cast
Guy Ryan Reynolds
Millie Jodie Comer
Antwan Taika Waititi
Walter Joe Keery
Avatar Channing Tatum
Buddy Lil Rel Howery

Film Summary

Guy has been in a programmed looped for all of his life. He got up, said “Hi” to his goldfish, got dressed, went to work, hung out with his best friend, Buddy, went home, slept, and repeat. That loop gets interrupted by Millie, a player in Free City, the game Guy exists in. How? Well, him developing a crush on her. But, with Millie not being an NPC (non-playable character) and only in Free City to find evidence for a lawsuit she has against the creator of the game, Antwan, who knows if Guy may get the reciprocal love he so desires. Especially since there is a guy in Millie’s real life, who has his eyes on her.

Things To Note | Question(s) Left Unanswered

Reason(s) for Film Rating

  1. Minor cursing: It isn’t every other word, but there are curse words here and there, alongside moments when curse words are implied
  2. Violence/ Mayhem: Note, there isn’t any blood, but there is gun violence and so many explosions
  3. Suggestive comedy: It’s a Ryan Reynolds movie – did you not expect this?

Things To Note

  • There are some rather awesome Disney property references.

Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. What does Millie do to pay bills?

Review

Lives Up To Premise/ Trailer

Free Guy goes beyond what was advertised. It makes you think you’re going to watch an NPC fall in love with a real person, and that does happen. However, the trailer doesn’t reveal that Millie and her best friend Walter made a video game, which Antwan stole the source code of. This leads to Millie trying to prove he did it, which leads to quite an epic adventure with the little guy going against a corporate giant. With, by the way, Walter working for Antwan because he needs money.

Story & Character Development

Free Guy leans more towards developing its story than its characters. We don’t learn things like what got Millie and Walter into making video games. In fact, what we learn about nearly all characters is rather superficial, like Millie enjoying a certain type of ice cream. However, the way the story is, you’ll become invested mainly due to Reynolds’ charisma.

Quality of Twists/ Climax

There aren’t any real twists in Free Guy and the climax? Honestly, I wouldn’t say the film has a high point as much as it establishes what is Millie’s end game and focuses on more and more people joining her.

Highlights

If You Enjoy Ryan Reynolds Movies, You’ll Enjoy This

Like Melissa McCarthy, Ryan Reynolds generally plays some form of the character type that made him famous in every movie – the only difference is what the character is going through and their end goal. Which, for those who aren’t fans of Ryan Reynolds, could make you think he is heavily reliant on this shtick. However, for those of you who can’t get enough of the dry sarcasm, slightly dirty humor, and a string of one-liners, Free Guy is for you.

Taikia Watiti & Channing Tatum Are Comically Weird

Usually, Reynolds is the weirdest person in the movie, and everyone else is someone he plays off of. However, Watiti gives Reynolds a run for his money as Antwan by being your usual eccentric rich person. As for Channing Tatum? Let’s just say for a man to be in a scene with Ryan Reynolds and potentially make the moment about him and leave a lasting impression? That’s saying something.

Though Tatum has increasingly become known for small roles that are rather unforgettable.

While It Could Say More, It Would Rather Touch On Things And Keep It Moving

Sexism, corporate tyranny, gaming culture, and likely other topics, they are touched upon but not to the point of making you roll your eyes. Yet, at the same time, it doesn’t seem to be touched upon simply to address how toxic the gaming industry is within the corporations who produce the games or because of some of its players. Rather, Free Guy finds that balance of taking note of the culture without trying to sound preachy.

It Doesn’t Feel Like It’s Two Hours

Time really flies by with this movie. Maybe it is all the explosions, comedic moments, and/or a story that focuses on the end goal and not so much on the obstacles? Either way, it isn’t likely you’ll check your phone to see how much time is left.

Buddy

While I wouldn’t say Lil Rel Howery shows himself to be a star in this film, he does play an excellent supporting role. I’d even say since Buddy doesn’t want to join Guy in acknowledging how their world really is, his character has unexpected depth. He is someone who has a routine, is generally happy, and the idea of blowing that up with the unknown? It makes him uncomfortable.

Granted, his best friend is the one introducing him to a different way of life, and Guy seems rather happy. But Buddy reminds you that you can’t always take your friends with you when you are on a journey, and sometimes they may never catch up or desire to join you.

On The Fence

Millie and Walter As A Couple

Once you learn Millie and Walter are connected, you know they will get together eventually. However, with her falling for Guy, even if he is just artificial intelligence, she and Walter birthed, that is where your heart is. And to be honest, while Comer and Reynolds play off each other well for comedy, they don’t really give you butterflies as a couple either. So even when Walter tries to establish he felt the way he does for a long time and has dropped major hints throughout their time together, it is cute but doesn’t make you demand they end up together.

Overall

Our Rating: Positive (Worth Seeing)

Free Guy is entertaining but not necessarily memorable. Ryan Reynolds just performs in the shtick we know him for, with a character that isn’t terrible but isn’t remarkable. Then, when it comes to Millie’s plight, while it does add layers to the film, like the film’s commentary on various topics dealing with the gaming industry, it doesn’t add any notable oomph. I wouldn’t even say it compensates for a to-the-point story.

But, with Free Guy being comical and containing a handful of genuine moments that can come off sweet, we think it is worth seeing.

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Title Card - Free Guy (2021)
Free Guy (2021) – Review/Summary (with Spoilers)
Who Is This For?
Fans of Ryan Reynolds' humor.
Highlights
Lives Up To Premise/ Trailer
If You Enjoy Ryan Reynolds Movies, You'll Enjoy This
Taikia Watiti & Channing Tatum Are Comically Weird
While It Could Say More, It Would Rather Touch On Things And Keep It Moving
It Doesn't Feel Like It's Two Hours
Buddy
Disputable
Story & Character Development
Quality of Twists/ Climax
Millie and Walter As A Couple
82

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