Atomic Blonde Movie Review: The Action Hero's Pursuit


In John Wick’s latest spy thriller, Atomic Blonde, the ‘80s are back, and I’m not just talking about Regan’s anti-Soviet propaganda, the tearing down of the Berlin Wall or the killer soundtrack, this anti-communist, top female spy thriller teaches us more about the action hero than we realize as we watch Charlize Theron taking punches from Soviet spies.

In Atomic Blonde, the heroine played by Charlize Theron is fighting a tight hero/villain balance to where we don’t know what side she is fighting for, we need to pick a side through the empathy we have to the character and the complete dislike we have other conspirators. It’s easy to dislike the cops, the CIA, MI5, the underground Soviet henchmen, and the double agents, but why don’t we connect with her?

As we watch her, we love her bone crushing, choreographed fight scenes (and I have to admit I liked her off the shoulder, ‘80s style outfits and thigh-high boots), but the ONE thing I would change about this movie is that there was no emotional connection to her. We didn’t know a WHY that she was fighting for and the value it had to her. The CIA and MI5 have a why in the film as they send her to retrieve the intel, but if it’s not valuable to her, then the only result is a sluggish narrative connected by fight scenes (and a few love scenes).

So how does this relate to storytelling for your business? Let me ask you:

How much do you value YOUR pursuit?

If you want the end result, you will keep going, sometimes at full speed and sometimes you will tread in the mud. When you value the process, you will show your passion and this creates an emotional connection with your viewers. Then ask:

How will I share my pursuit with the world? Daily?

Little by little, day by day, but keep the emotional ties strong so people are connected to you whether they tune in for the fight scene, the love scene, the pow wow or the triumphant moment of victory as you share the story of your business.

And if you are looking for a movie to see with friends or a Saturday night date, Atomic Blonde was one of the better movies I’ve seen in a long time and if there is a first female James Bond archetype, Charlize Theron should be a prime candidate for the role.

For more about heroes and villains in my video review, watch here:


Questions? I’m here to help.

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