Legacy of Lies Parent Guide
With brief moments of plot stringing together action set pieces, this movie doesn't have much of a story holding it together.
Parent Movie Review
Martin Baxter (Scott Adkins) got out of the international espionage business after a catastrophic mission in Kiev twelve years ago. Now, Martin lives in London with his daughter Lisa (Honor Kneafsey), fighting in underground bare-knuckle matches and working as a bouncer at night to make ends meet. But when Sacha (Yuliia Sobol) walks into the club on night, she brings Martin’s past with her. Now confronted with the failure of his last operation, Martin risks falling back into the dangerous web of secret agencies he thought he left behind. The last straw comes when the Russian kidnap Lisa to force Martin to secure information from Sacha, pitting Martin against his own former agency and the CIA in a race to save his daughter…
If that sounds messy, it’s because it is. The story isn’t really the focus; it’s just the increasingly banal glue that sticks the big action set pieces together. And, in all fairness, the movie is well aware of that. The emphasis is very much on the fighting, but there isn’t quite enough of it to keep the pacing moving along, so the movie has a tendency to drag. None of that is helped by the stale-dated Cold-War action/spy movie dialogue, which feels like it was filtered through Google Translate at least once before making it to the script.
Once you actually get to the action, it’s well done. Scott Adkins, the star of the picture, came up as a stunt performer and has worked on several big action flicks – thankfully, it shows. The choreography is designed to highlight the ability of the stunt performers, giving them nice long takes to give story and shape to the fights. It isn’t quite on the level of something like John Wick, but it’s miles better than some productions I could name with similar budgets.
Sadly, despite being perfect for the hormonally lobotomized audience that is teenage boys, the film has too much profanity for parents to be terribly comfortable with this as a sleepover movie. There is also a sex scene which sneaks out of nowhere like a mad flasher – and then lingers for about five minutes. Say what you will about flashers, but they typically have the good sense to scram afterwards. The screenwriter must have just really wanted to get some female nudity into the film, presumably to pep up the non-action scenes. It just comes across as awkward, much like the rest of the film. Poor writing, tonal inconsistencies, and serious pacing problems leave Legacy of Lies with far more problems than benefits. If you’re willing to skip around between the fight scenes, you might come up with twenty minutes of good entertainment. I just wouldn’t be willing to spend money for those twenty minutes alone.Directed by Adrian Bol. Starring Scott Adkins, Honor Kneafsey, and Andrea Vasiliou. Theatrical release July 28, 2020. Updated July 28, 2020
Watch the trailer for Legacy of Lies
Legacy of Lies
Rating & Content Info
Why is Legacy of Lies rated R? Legacy of Lies is rated R by the MPAA for violence, language and some sexuality/nudity.
Violence: People are frequently shot and killed. There are multiple depictions of hand-to-hand combat. A character is shown being struck repeatedly in the hand with a hammer as a form of torture.
Sexual Content: There are scenes which occur in strip clubs, although explicit nudity is not seen. There is a sex scene which includes female toplessness.
Profanity: There are 27 sexual expletives, 9 scatological curses, and occasional use of terms of deity and mild profanity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Characters are shown smoking cigarettes on one occasion, and background characters are shown with drinks in club settings. People are briefly depicted drinking beer.
Page last updated July 28, 2020
Legacy of Lies Parents' Guide
Legacy of Lies deals directly with the real world practice of Russian operatives poisoning political opponents with Novichok nerve agents. Where has this happened? What have the consequences been? Do you think the international community’s response has been adequate? What is Russia’s official position on these incidents? How does it differ from other official accounts? What other methods have been used to kill outspoken activists against Russia’s government?
The New York Times: 2 Poisonings, a Killing and a Diplomatic Crisis: The Novichok Case
Evening Standard: Salisbury Novichok poisonings: A timeline of events
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The best alternative to this film would be The Bourne Identity and its two sequels, The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum. If you’re less interested in the politics and more concerned with the action, then the John Wick trilogy (Chapter One, Chapter Two, and Chapter Three) is probably your best bet.