“Free Guy” isn’t a good movie, it’s a great one

Julia Moon, Editor in Chief

As a casual gamer myself, NPCs (Non-Playable Characters) can range from being the best helper to being the worst character in the game. One might even think that if the character were playable, they would have been able to do a better job at the task than what was programmed into the game itself. Despite not being a real non-playable character, Ryan Reynolds is probably the best NPCs to ever exist. That is, if ‘Free City’ was an actual video game. 

Directed by Shawn Levy and produced by Levy, Reynolds, Sarah Schechter, Greg Berlanti and Adam Kolbrenner, “Free Guy” is a solid, fresh take on action comedy. Being able to cater to streamers, gamers, and Ryan Reynolds fans, the success of “Free Guy” wasn’t really a surprise to me. 

Movies have their fair share of cameos and easter eggs, and “Free Guy” definitely does not disappoint. With big name cameos such as Hugh Jackman, Dwayne Johnson, Tina Fey, Chris Evans and a handful of YouTube personalities among others, the film was filled to the brim with surprises and hilarious gags. Reynolds really is someone who is inherently funny, which I doubt was ever a surprise as he is famously known as Deadpool, the comedy-filled antihero based on the character from Marvel Comics and future addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). 

The idea of going from the real reality to an alternate one is common. Movies like “Ready Player One,” “Tron,” “The Matrix,” “Jumanji” and many others have used this concept before, all with vastly different ideas and stories. “Free Guy” is no exception; although it is possible that this concept could have become a boring commonplace in the film, Levy takes this view and puts it visually on screen in a believable way, making you feel like you’re being immersed in the fictional game and experiencing the adventures that Guy, Reynolds’s character, goes through in order to save the game from Antwan (Taika Waititi), the CEO of the fictional game developer Soonami Studios.

While others might say that the movie is too crowded with cameos and product placement, the film places cameos and references to a handful of popular video game titles such as Half Life and Portal throughout the film without making it seem over-the-top. Being someone who enjoys the connections that the filmography makes to particular video games, the blatant references were not a hassle at all to watch. 

“Free Guy” has its fair share of ups and downs, and while some might comment that video-game inspired movies are a little too redundant in this time and age, the action-comedy flick definitely deserves to be a part of my growing list of video-game-esque movies to look out for.