Free Guy is a sci-fi action comedy film directed by Shawn Levy that tells the story of a Guy (Ryan Reynolds). He lives a simple and routine life as a bank teller at Free City Bank until one day when he discovers that he is actually a non-player character (NPC) in the ultra-violent, open-world video game named Free City.
When Guy meets Molotovgirl (Jodie Comer), she ends up helping him navigate the game and come to terms with the fact that the only life he has known is just a virtual one. After this realisation, Guy decides to become the hero of his own story – one he rewrites himself. He becomes determined to be the guy who saves his world before it is too late.
On the surface, Free Guy seems like a typical family-friendly action movie that happens to target the Fortnite Generation, but there were themes that speak of free will, and the relationship between creator and creation.
The film stars a strong line-up of actors and actresses, including Golden Globe-nominated star Reynolds as Guy, Emmy-winning star Comer as Molotovgirl/Millie, Lil Rel Howery as Buddy, as well as Joe Keery as Keys, Utkarsh Ambudkar as Mouser and Taika Waititi as Antwan, three characters who work for Free Guy game developer Soonami.
However, in spite of the promising cast, I felt that the characters they played could have more dimensions to their personalities. The plot was rather fast-paced and had a fair amount of twists and turns.
Despite that, I still enjoyed watching the screenwriter slowly unfurl the story. Guy’s existential crisis in the film is one that viewers would find relatable. It was also interesting to watch him overcome it. Wanting more in life is a basic and universal human aspiration, so being able to follow his highs and lows, and ultimately celebrate his triumph, definitely makes it a feel-good movie that makes your mood a little better after watching.
The film also features cameos from a few well-known YouTubers and Twitch Streamers including Imane ‘Pokimane’ Anys, Seán William ‘Jacksepticeye’ McLoughlin, Lannan ‘LazarBeam’ Eacott, Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins, and Daniel ‘DanTDM’ Middleton to tie in with the video gaming concept.
The movie is littered with Easter eggs which might be interesting to catch when watching the film for a second time.
The visual effects in the film were impressive and I appreciated the duality and visual variety between the video game and real life. That said, I also wished they made the hacking and coding component less movie-like and a little more realistic.
Despite it being a cliche, I still enjoyed the theme of friendship and love in the movie.
For those wondering if there will be a Free Guy sequel, Reynolds tweeted: “Aaaannnnd after 3 years messaging Free Guy as an original IP movie, Disney confirmed today they officially want a sequel a day after the movie was released. It would appear that the world is not quite done with Blue Shirt Guy!”
Free Guy will be in cinemas on Oct 14.