Karen Gillan’s next action movie is here! She stars in Gunpowder Milkshake as Sam, who has followed in her mother’s footsteps and grown into a fierce hit-woman. When a high-risk job goes wrong, Sam must choose between serving The Firm, the ruthless crime syndicate she works for, and protecting the life of an innocent 8-year-old girl, Emily (Chloe Coleman). With a target on her back, Sam has only one chance to survive: Reunite with her mother (played by Lena Headey) and her lethal associates, The Librarians (played by Michelle Yeoh, Angela Bassett, and Carla Gugino). These three generations of women must now learn to trust each other, stand up to The Firm and their army of henchmen, and raise hell against those who could take everything from them.
Gunpowder Milkshake was directed by Navot Papushado and will be released on Netflix tomorrow, July 14. Critics have started sharing their reviews of the action film, so let’s take a look.
Our very own Eric Eisenberg was not super impressed with the movie, rating it 2 out of 5 stars. He thought there was a lack of any kind of substance in the film, and that it relied too heavily on style. Eisenberg also argued that though the action flick does allow Gillan to demonstrate some serious ass-kicking skills, which is enjoyable to watch, it doesn’t provide any emotional investment or inspired characterization for her or the other characters with its lazy writing. Overall, he noted:
The movie is far too concerned with being a dictionary definition of “cool” that it fails to offer anything that is remotely satisfying.
Kate Erbland of IndieWire had a few more positive things to say about Gunpowder Milkshake than Eisenberg. She enjoyed its “winking” sense of humor as it put a spin on other action franchises, like John Wick. Though she admitted that the plot left something to be desired and was a little confusing at times, Erbland thought the action movie was fun overall, saying:
This first entry could stand to be a bit more satisfying on its own, but the sugar rush that accompanies Gunpowder Milkshake is more than sweet enough to prove its place in a fast-growing sub-genre, with a cherry on top.
John Defore of The Hollywood Reporter was relatively disappointed with the movie. He thought it tried too hard to mimic other action franchises like John Wick and Kill Bill, and argued that the writing wasn't at all compelling, and under-serves a lot of characters. Though he enjoyed some action pieces, he noted that most fight scenes ended up looking lifeless. He said:
Though not without its moments, the film offers too little of interest for its leading ladies to do, and feels throughout like an adaptation of a comic book that was written for the sole purpose of being sold to an IP-hungry film studio.
Caroline Siede froom AV Club had a somewhat middling opinion of Gunpowder Milkshake. While she applauded Gillan’s performance and the impressive female ensemble, she also noted some criticisms. She thought the film was frustratingly inconsistent with its logic and tone, while also getting too bogged down in thematic elements that disrupt the pace of the plot. But Siede enjoyed some aspects of the film, calling it “fun” overall, and said:
Gunpowder Milkshake has all of the ingredients for a truly great action flick, even if it doesn’t always combine them in quite the right proportions.
Amelia Emberwing of What To Watch also pointed out the similarities between Gunpowder Milkshake and John Wick, but argued that the Gillan-led action flick still stands out with its own originality. While she noted that the first part of the film is a little too exposition-heavy and drags the pace along, she enjoyed it overall. She commended the performances of the ensemble, the stylized and bright filmmaking, and the action pieces, summarizing the movie by saying:
An all-star cast gleefully shoots its way through a slightly overlong but otherwise delightful story.
Well, that was a pretty mixed bag of reviews. Some critics really didn't like Gunpowder Milkshake, and some enjoyed it well enough. You'll be able to see for yourself when the movie releases on Netflix tomorrow, July 14.
In the meantime, check out what else is ahead for Karen Gillan.