WHAT I LIKED: Shawn Levy's 'Free Guy,' is a high-concept video game movie for people who don't like video games all that much, so it appeals very much to me.
It follows Ryan Reynolds as an NPC (non-player character) called Guy in a typically absurd, questionable, anarchist game environment called free-city, and he hilariously lives out the same day working at a bank from his mindlessly happy dispoisition whilst players wreak havoc around him. Then he starts doing lovely, heroic things for himself, confusing the players and managers of the game who the film frequently cuts to, until - albeit after a little mystery - young programmers Millie (Jodie Comer) and Keys (Joe Keery) realise that he's an embodiment of their joyous, optimistic Articial Intelligence creation that was stolen by the game's evil creator Antoine (Taika Waititi).
The narrative then becomes about the pair fighting, along with their Guy, to show this to the world and release their online utopia without Antoine shutting it down, and it's rather investing because on the one hand you really do dislike the game on show, and also because you care about the characters. Guy is not only funny but also rather lovely; a beacon of hope in an otherwise horrible alternate world, and then Millie and Keys are both brillianty awkward, optimistic teens who also have a rather engaging connection between them. That all makes it a pretty fun blockbuster that has heart and something behind it that's about far more than your typical video-game movie.
WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: Sure it's no profound thematic masterpiece, and some of the jokes are a little overindulgent, but for what it is it's great fun.
VERDICT: A video game movie that actually becomes about deconstructing a typically horrible alternate reality and creating a much more pleasant one, 'Free Guy,' has more heart and meat than you'd expect, and is bags of fun too.