We still have many months to wait before the Man of Steel and the Dark Knight officially collide, but in a certain sense, that battle's already here.
This weekend sees the release of "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.," the Guy Ritchie action movie starring Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer as competing agents for America and Russia respectively, forced to work with one another toward a common goal, despite their mutual mistrust. It's basically the "Batman v Superman" of spy movies, and here's why:
You know Cavill as Clark, but did you know…Warner Bros.
…Armie Hammer was briefly Bruce once upon a time? He was supposed to don the cape and cowl in "Justice League: Mortal," the George Miller movie that became one of the highest-profile casualties of the 2007-2008 Writers Strike. This is the closest we'll get to seeing Hammer's Batman hammering on Superman.
Cavill and Hammer's feuding spies are basically Superman and Batman.Warner Bros.
As American agent Napoleon Solo, Cavill is dashing and daring, getting himself out of any jam with calm and confident swagger. As Russian agent Illya Kuryakin, Hammer is impossibly strong and impossible to stop, prone to great bouts of fury at the slightest provocation. Sound like two people you've heard about before?
They do not like each other.Warner Bros.
From its opening moments to its closing scenes, "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." pits Napoleon against Illya, two titans of the espionage world on opposite sides of the Cold War coming right up against the other. You get the sense that these foes would be better served working with each other, but some philosophical divides must be solved with the fisticuffs.
But despite their differences…Warner Bros.
They work together INCREDIBLY well. Napoleon's ingenuity and Illya's rage are powerful enough on their own, but are virtually unstoppable when combined together — just like Supes and Bats whenever they put their differences aside.
Wonder Woman is here, too!Warner Bros.
Okay, not really, but there's a third piece to the "Man From U.N.C.L.E." trinity in the form of Alicia Vikander as Gaby Teller, a central player in the mission to disarm nuclear-powered terrorists. Beneath something of a fish-out-of-water exterior, Gaby proves that she can more than handle her own when the occasion arises.
It's the Dawn of...Warner Bros.
…well, not quite Justice, but it's the dawn of something. A superhero team of sorts is assembled by the end of "U.N.C.L.E.," much like we've been led to believe about the upcoming "Batman v Superman" and how it sets up the two-part "Justice League" follow-up.
It's awesome.Warner Bros.
Really, it's a terrific spy thriller, one you owe it to yourself to check out. There's still a lot of time between now and "Batman v Superman," so who knows if it can meet "Man From U.N.C.L.E." in terms of sheer rawness — but one can hope!