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The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Review | ‘Argylle’ is a chaotic yet fun experience

“Argylle” promises audiences a fun and chaotic theater experience complete with books, spies, and one well-traveled cat.
Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY
June 18, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Portrait of Bryce Dallas Howard taken at the Palihouse Hotel in West Hollywood. Howard returns for a second time as “Claire” in “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” the sequel to “Jurassic World.” Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY

After several months of watching the trailer for “Argylle,” I can confidently say that the film is a chaotic and amusing film that entertains its audience after watching it. Released on Friday, the film is currently showing in theaters.

“Argylle” tells the story of author Elly Conway, played by Bryce Dallas Howard, who is hard at work writing the fifth book in her bestselling spy thriller series. However, her life is interrupted by a real-world secret agent, played by Sam Rockwell, who confronts her and claims that her books have been foretelling real events.

Elly then finds herself wrapped up in a covert spy mission, where she must figure out exactly who she is meant to trust.

As a writer, I was compelled by Elly’s character and enjoyed getting to see an author’s creations come to life. Elly often finds herself forced out of her comfort zone and must learn to adapt to the reality she is confronted with.

During the crazy events of the film, Elly takes comfort in the character of Agent Argylle, played by Henry Cavill, who becomes a fixture in her mind. I thought the choice to have Argylle pop up in Elly’s mind was clever as it connected the fictional world, she created with the events happening around her.

While the story initially follows Elly, audiences soon learn that not everything is what it seems. The narrative twists and turns, jerking the audience in directions that have them questioning everything about the plot. These twists felt insane at times, as I tried to wrap my head around everything that was happening, but this also naturally fit into the story itself.

After a few silly dance sequences and an ice-skating battle, the truth is ultimately revealed.

I also enjoyed Rockwell’s character, Aiden. He was a highly entertaining and easy-to-root-for hero who had me chuckling throughout. From his first scene on the train, when he uses a copy of Elly’s book as a weapon, I knew that I would like him.

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The movie fully leans into its ridiculousness, which is one of the reasons why I believe it works so well. It never takes itself too seriously and provides audiences with a whimsical, comedic movie that allows its star-studded cast to have fun.

At first, it seems Alfie is there simply as a foil to Elly’s reclusive nature, repeatedly comparing her to the stereotype of the “crazy cat lady.” There is also a funny bit that occurs during the film as we learn that Aiden is allergic to cats and is thus exasperated by Elly’s insistence on not leaving her feline friend, Alfie, behind.

The globe-trotting plot’s twists and turns will keep audiences guessing until the end. I highly recommend seeing “Argylle” for anyone who wants to sit back, relax, and laugh for a couple of hours.

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About the Contributor
Riley Dunn
Riley Dunn, Arts Reporter
Riley Dunn is a first-year student at the University of Iowa majoring in English and Creative Writing and Journalism and Mass Communications. Prior to her time at the DI, Riley interned for Swimming World Magazine.