The Old Guard | Chicago Reader
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The Old Guard

With this adaptation of Greg Rucka and Leandro Fernandez’s graphic novel The Old Guard (which was scripted by Rucka), director Gina Prince-Bythewood (Love & Basketball, Beyond the Lights) delivers a big-budget comic book movie that’s both entertaining and affecting. The perennially badass Charlize Theron stars as Andromache of Scythia, aka Andy, the leader of a clandestine group of immortal warriors who come from different points in history. The film’s plot centers on the group acquiring a new member, Nile (KiKi Layne), and subsequently fighting back against a conniving pharmaceutical CEO who seeks to harvest their DNA. This succeeds where Prince-Bythewood has always excelled: focusing on strong women, especially women of color, like herself—Nile, a young, Black marine, is formidable, and there’s a backstory involving Vietnamese actress Veronica Ngo’s character that seems likely to spawn a sequel—and love, be it romantic—two of the male immortals (Marwan Kenzari and Luca Marinelli) are in a millennia-long relationship—or familial. There’s an indescribable affection for and among the characters in Prince-Bythewood’s films that never feels contrived, and here it imbues even an action-packed tale with very real sincerity. With Matthias Schoenaerts, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Harry Melling.

Now streaming on Netflix

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