The Protégé: A Potent Cocktail of Action and Espionage
7/14/2021 • 3 min read
We only see new James Bond movies once every handful of years. Seriously, the last Bond film, SPECTRE, came out in 2015, meaning that there's than half a decade between Bond movies at this point. Sure, there was a pandemic, but that’s still quite a gulf for Bond fans.
The solution is to broaden our horizons when it comes to seeking out great spy action. Maybe we get to sit down to a Jason Bourne film, or something along the lines of ATOMIC BLONDE. This year, one of the best new spy movie choices is THE PROTÉGÉ, which comes from a filmmaker who knows a thing or two about what makes modern Bond films work. But we’ll get to that later — first up, here's what THE PROTÉGÉ is all about.
The Story in The Protégé
As the title suggests, THE PROTÉGÉ focuses on a a character who has been in training for a specific sort of job. In this case, Anna's calling is the dangerous world of international espionage. When Moody, her long-time mentor, finally falls prey to his enemies, Anna steps into his shoes as an elite agent of vengeance, and promptly plants her sights on Moody's killer. For a visual representation of this synopsis, feel free to check out the film’s awesome trailer above.
THE PROTÉGÉ brings this classic setup to movie theaters on August 20.
The Protégé Star Maggie Q
Maggie Q has been building a career in Hollywood and Chinese cinema for more than twenty years now. You may recognize her from roles in MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE III, LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD, or all three films in the DIVERGENT series. Like her character in THE PROTÉGÉ, Maggie Q has spent much of her time filling support roles and now finds herself in a position to break out as a star in her own right. She certainly has the action chops for the task.
Supporting Players Samuel L Jackson and Michael Keaton
Samuel L Jackson and Michael Keaton have been in the same film more than once — JACKIE BROWN, the ROBOCOP remake, and maybe even the upcoming third SPIDER-MAN movie — but they rarely get to share screen time. Sadly, according to the trailer above, that trend may continue in THE PROTÉGÉ.
But that’s okay. Both actors bring an insane amount of charisma to the big screen and it looks like the plot will lean on Jackson initially before switching gears to a focus on Keaton. At this stage in his career, Keaton makes for a terrific villain. (He added so much to SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING!) And we'll hold out hope for a great flashback scene to bring these two titans of cinema together.
Director Martin Campbell
THE PROTÉGÉ comes from a filmmaker who knows how to make modern spy action work. Director Martin Campbell oversaw the movie that many people consider to be among the best James Bond films: CASINO ROYALE. But that’s not all. He also directed the underrated QUANTUM OF SOLACE and the best movie of Pierce Brosnan’s Bond run, GOLDENEYE. Just in terms of James Bond films, that’s an impressive resume!
In addition to those movies, Campbell also directed the amazing action/adventure movie THE MASK OF ZORRO and the bleak but effective Jackie Chan thriller THE FOREIGNER. Campbell has both the action and espionage bona fides to turn THE PROTÉGÉ into a summer thrill ride.
THE PROTÉGÉ opens on August 20!
All images courtesy of Lionsgate Films.