LIFT | Review by: Benjamin Garrett


Netflix’s latest original is a cheap looking, uninspired Mission: Impossible wannabe with a solid ensemble cast. Sounds a lot like last year’s Heart of Stone, doesn’t it? Let’s pray this isn’t a new annual trend for the streaming juggernaut. 

This is Oceans Eleven without the brains. Bond without the charm. Mission: Impossible without the jaw dropping stunts. This heist thriller feels like a watered down amalgamation of better films, and seems wholly content with not aspiring to be anything more. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather see a movie aim for something different and fail miserably, than settle for being a stale, complacent copy-cat of other movies in its genre. 

The cast is serviceable, but most of them are either miscast or underused. With Kevin Hart in the leading role, you’d think this would lean more into comedy, but the jokes are far and few between. Hart is at his best during the few scenes he gets to crack jokes, but otherwise I don’t really think he fits the part. The two standouts are Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Billy Magnusson, both bringing solid energy to a movie that’s sorely lacking any.

The film has the over-saturated, super bright look that seems to come standard with these types of Netflix originals. It’s glossy and slick, but very artificial. The visual effects leave a lot to be desired, with a ton of needless green screen in scenes that could’ve been shot on location. The CGI is the worst offender, though, with a lengthy plane sequence in particular that looks like gameplay taken from Microsoft Flight Simulator. 

The only heist Lift pulls off is stealing an hour and forty minutes of your time. This pale imitation of better movies never strives to be anything more, which makes it so much worse. Netflix is off to a very rocky start with their first original film of 2024, but it can only go up from here, right? 


Review by: Benjamin Garrett

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