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Argylle, a play by play: part one


Art by Jessica Calaguas

LIGHTS. CAMERA. I'm a whole different person? Elly Conway isn’t actually a best-seller, she's a spy. Her books, on the other hand, are completely real, full of her lost memories.


The movie begins inside her fantasized version of her fourth book. Honestly, I never thought Henry Cavill would play a geometrically weird-haired fictional character, but maybe that's just me. Henry Cavill’s character, Argylle, enters the dance floor, approaching Dua Lipa’s character, LaGrange. He almost gets rejected but he has a mission and insists. Taking her hand and leading her to the middle of the dance floor, they lock eyes and start melodically dancing in a smooth yet hostile way. Then it was time for “The Whirly Bird!” Argylle picked LaGrange up by the hips, placing them under his neck, her legs resting on his shoulders. They spin, and spin, and then spin some more. They stop spinning (finally), he puts her down, and guns are pointed at him! Surprise surprise!


Turns out she was an enemy spy! Uh oh! Suddenly, everyone who was dancing and drinking are now holding Argylle at gunpoint. He had anticipated this and uttered the keyword to his partner. (“A little help, Keira.”) Everything goes dark. PEW, PEW, PEW. Somehow Argylle escapes unscathed, but LaGrange is outside too. She’s on a bike, and holding a machine gun. He dives behind the getaway car, more pew pew pews. Once her mag is finished she gives one last look, flips her hair, and speeds down the hill in a clearly CGI manner.


Quickly getting up from behind the bullet-ridden car, Argylle finds his partner had been shot, and in the heart of all places. He tries to save her by stopping the bleeding, but his superior’s voice rings in his earpiece. He must go on with the mission and hunt LaGrange down. Unable to use the car, he grabs the nearest golf cart and speeds after her in style.


Racing down the hill he realizes he can’t catch up to her like this… so of course he resorts to driving the gold buggie on the roofs of the city. Crashing down them until he slides them down the stairs like a skateboard and jumps over her bike. Now that he’s landed, all of the wheels on his cart are not on the car anymore.


Argylle has a partner waiting in a cafe, but when they start the scene, there's only a floating coffee cup and not anyone there. It's like he’s invisible. Joking, of course, it's only John Cena’s character, Wyatt. Anyways, back to the scene. Wyatt is starting to lift his coffee to take a sip of it when Argylle interrupts the blissful moment between a man and his coffee. Rude, honestly, come on Argylle! As soon as he goes back to trying to drink it LaGrange comes speeding down the road. He’s debating whether or not he has time to drink his delicious Greek coffee but decides he should probably catch the enemy spy. Props to him, honestly, I would’ve chosen to enjoy my coffee. Now comes the most notable scene from the movie, when he snatches her off her bike and holds her off the ground.


OH, and Henry Cavill shows his wonderful British accent to the audience. I'm applauding, aren’t you? Sorry, got a little sidetracked there. LaGrange has something that Argylle and Wyatt want, which she willingly gives up while at gunpoint (validly so). When they discover that their boss is evil and corrupted, she kills herself. Bye bye, LaGrange! This shocking news leaves the two spies with a choice… to go off the grid or to not go off the grid. (I hope you got my reference) They drop their earpieces in coffee to start the process of getting off the grid. It's an interesting choice and a little bitter in my opinion.


“We’re on our own now,” Argylle says at the end of the scene. Oh my… So edgy… Y’all are all alone…


Now to Elly Conway! We meet Elly Conway as she finishes reading the last words of her book at a meet and greet. She answers some questions from the audience and the last one catches her a bit off guard, as a guy asks her out. She rejects him and says she already had a hot date that night. Pssst… the hot date was actually her having writer's block and talking to her cat.


She tries to end her book and keeps replaying the last chapter in her head repeatedly, trying to make it perfect. Eventually settling upon one of the many endings, she sends it to her mom to proofread. The next morning her mother calls her to tell her it needs some work… and she should come down for the weekend so they can work on it together. Elly agrees with her mom and they should write another chapter.


Instead of letting her mom fly out to help her, she hops on the next train to see her. One thing about Elly is that she has a crippling fear of flying, so a train is the best alternative. Though, maybe not this train. Once again, a guy tries to make his move on her, and she declines his offer. You don't have to tell me, but girl, are you gay? He was decent this time!! I applaud your stamina in this no-men thing though. She tries to keep herself hidden behind a book, but yet ANOTHER guy comes up to her and without asking sits down in front of her. He recognizes her from reading her book. Elly gets extremely uncomfortable and tries to hide behind her book once more. I don’t think it's working very well since the book is smaller than her head, but whatever you think works girl…


He proceeds to try and make small talk about her being a writer, and eventually, they get to the topic of his doing espionage for a living, how fun! Honestly, if it paid well I’d consider it too (for legal reasons this is a joke, you’re not catching me today FBI). The weird guy tries to warn her that the next person who asks for an autograph will want to kill her. Which freaks her out and makes her paranoid. Then the delusions start… Don't worry she isn’t schizophrenic, just obsessed with the fictional male lead of her book series.

He starts giving her instructions on what to do when the time comes. Which is to hold onto him like you’ve never hung onto anyone else before, the biggest bear hug ever. Sound familiar, little spider monkey?


Then, it starts. With a catchy beat, might I add. The weird guy who turns out to be a spy and surprisingly good at fighting attacks one of the enemies while he tries to inject Elly with poison instead of getting her to sign his book. In my humble opinion, why even ask her then? It's a little rude to ask someone to sign your book and try to kill them before they can sign it. After the weird guy fights off most of the bad guys in their car, his gun falls into Elly’s lap. She tries to point it at him, but she's a little bit of a coward and ends up giving it back to him.


Elly’s poor cat, Argylle has just been sitting in her cat backpack this whole time watching everything unfold.


While the weird spy guy gets almost shoved out of the train’s broken window he becomes the fictional version of Argylle and smooths his hair back in slow motion… Elly, girl, mamacita, get some help!! She tries to escape once more to another rail cart but is soon pushed into the train bathroom to protect her from enemy spies. The door shuts… and reopens with the fiction Argylle being a glorious witty spy. She’s in awe and has a dazed expression on her face. I wonder if she knows he isn’t real, and only a coping mechanism, who’s gonna break it to her?


Finally, the bathroom door opens again and it’s time to go. Elly tries to go the opposite way once again. Stop making bad choices! Haven’t you learned anything from this train? More bad guys appear and the lead one is somebody she saw at the release of her book, she tries to say hi to him but he just points his gun at her. The weird spy guy is pulling her away to the back of the train telling her it's time for a big bear hug. She’s trying to plead to the bad spies that she isn’t with the weird guy but he just straps her into his backpack.


With one last yell, he hits the button to open the back of the train and they get sucked out of it. Now they're flying, in a big parachute while Elly is holding on like a spider monkey. With enough screaming, she finally passes out, concluding the first part of the movie.


If I'm being honest, Argylle had me questioning my decision to sit in a dark, wallowed, buttery seat in an almost abandoned AMC theater. I’m a third of my way through this movie, and I'm still contemplating my decision.

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