We know that The 355 didn’t do well in at the box office. At first thought, you might think it is because it’s woke since it’s an all-female team and so on, but that’s not the main problem with it.

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The official blurb on the movie is:

When a top-secret weapon falls into mercenary hands, a wild card CIA agent joins forces with three international agents on a lethal mission to retrieve it, while staying a step ahead of a mysterious woman who’s tracking their every move.

That sounded OK. The movie stars Jessica Chastain, Penelope Cruz, Diane Kruger, Lupita Nyong’o, Bingbing Fan and some men. It is directed by Simon Kinberg, known for directing X-Men: Dark Phoenix and writing things like X-Men: The Last Stand, Days of Future Past, Apocalypse and Dark Phoenix, XXX2: The Next Level, Mr & Mrs Smith, Sherlock Holmes (2009), Fantastic Four (2015) and some of Star Wars: Rebels. That’s a pretty mixed bag, with some real stinkers in there!

The overall movie isn’t terrible, it’s a decent enough spy thriller with a half-decent story, but it’s nothing outstanding.

To start on a positive note, it is a fairly original IP which I did like. It wasn’t another churned-out reboot, a remake, or another sequel. It is an original property.

It is pretty much James Bond for Girls. The main protagonists are ladies and they are all kick-ass, tech experts and amazing. It did make me laugh that James Bond can usually win the day all by himself but here, the girls all need each other to help out. Something about sisterhood.

The woke wasn’t the main issue though, it’s the casting that didn’t work. Now, I have mentioned how much I am in love with Future Mr NGL, Jessica Chastain. However, I am not a Stan. I don’t love all of her movies unconditionally, but I am a fan.

In The 355 the main story is about her, but this is also where the main issue lies. She’s just not very good at the action. There is a lot of action in this movie and, overall, it’s pretty good, but it also feels really awkward.

It reminded me of Gunpowder Milkshake with Karen Gillian. I read that Gillian said she didn’t have long to prepare for the fight scenes and it really showed in the movie. The action was just cheap and none of it looked real.

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It is the same with this movie. The action is just clunky and doesn’t feel real. I am maybe being overly picky but, for me, it took me out of the action a few times.

Since you had a group of female agents and it’s 2022 none of the ladies use their feminine wiles to get their way. Well, Cruz does at one point but it was only a mild flirtation. The ladies have a hostage and threaten him.

Honestly, at the promise of an handjob from any of those ladies and I would have folded quicker than Superman on laundry day. But we cannot sexualise women anymore, so everyone keeps their clothes on and only a little cleavage is shown.

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Aside from my own perversions, the ladies are good, but they are all just wrong!

Jessica is awkward, Cruz is a bit wimpy, Nyong’o is the tech expert and stands around most of the time with a phone/laptop hacking everything in sight! The only lady that I think worked was Kruger. The rest of them just didn’t fit the movie and didn’t handle the action all that well.

I honestly think a different cast, even if it was all ladies, would have worked well and you would have had a decent action flick. As I said I didn’t feel the woke was forced, but it was there. All the women are great and all the men and devious, baddies or just get killed off.

It did also irk me that it did the whole “tick all the boxes for diversity” thing. In the main team of ladies, you have a red-head, a European one, a Black one, an Asian one, and a Latino one. If they just had a trans one, they would have got full marks from the blue ticks on Twitter.

The other thing that really annoyed me was the subtitles. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a good foreign movie, read my review of Cinema Paradiso. But I hate seeing a Hollywood movie with loads of foreign language in it and subtitles. I made a cup of tea during the middle and could hear the movie, but had no idea what people were saying. A good chunk of the dialogue is subtitled, so be warned.

Future Mrs NGL
Future Mrs NGL

I’m going to give The 355 a middle-of-the-road 2.5 out of 5. It was a decent action movie, but it had its issues. I am being a little generous with the score since Mrs NGL was in it, but I can’t see me watching it again anytime soon.

If you want a mindless action movie for a couple of hours, with nice-looking female leads then you might The 355, but don’t expect much.

The 355 is still only in the cinema and will be streaming soon on Peacock.

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