"Spy Vs. Spy"
What You Need To Know:
The first two episodes of CITADEL are fast-paced with lots of thrills and good performances. Though some parts seem to stretch credulity, the story gets quickly to the point and strongly holds the viewer’s attention. The first two episodes of CITADEL have a strong moral, pro-family worldview. However, they have lots of strong foul language, including a fair number of “f” words and two strong profanities. Also, there’s some slightly excessive bloody, intense violence and a gratuitous reference to same-sex marriage. So, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution for CITADEL.
CITADEL is a new spy thriller on Amazon Prime. In the first two of six episodes, an evil criminal organization called Manticore and founded by eight of the world’s richest families decimates an independent international spy agency called Citadel, which fights for the “greater good.” Eight years later, Bernard Orlick (Stanley Tucci), the surviving director of Citadel, locates his best agent, Mason Kane, whose memory has been wiped and now is married with a wife and daughter. Orlick asks Mason, who’s thinks his name is Kyle Conroy, to stop Manticore from unlocking a black Citadel case with access to the location of all its remaining agents and access to the world’s nuclear weapons.
Orlick and Mason travel to New York City to infiltrate Manticore’s building where it’s unlocking the encrypted codes that can open the case. Mason retrieves the case, but he’s followed and a car chase with Manticore’s top agent begins. The bad gut catches up with them, Orlick is wounded, a gunfight ensues, and Orlick is captured, but Mason gets away with the case.
Manticore is sure to find Mason and his family, who are hiding out in Wyoming, anxious for him to return. Mason’s only hope is to make contact with another former Citadel agent, Nadia, in Spain, unlock her wiped memories and continue the fight against Manticore.
The first two episodes of CITADEL are a fast-paced, taut spy thriller that wastes little time throwing viewers into the action and moving its plot along at a very good clip. Stanley Tucci’s performance as the mastermind behind Citadel is engaging and convincing. Richard Madden’s Mason Kane and Priyanka Chopra Jonas’s Nadia make a great team. The program’s JASON BOURNE mind wipe motif is as enthralling as it was for Jason, and the revelation of the high stakes involved is thrilling.
That said, some elements may seem to stretch reality a bit too far. For example, the program’s implication that Citadel is the virtuous white horse in a chess game of international hegemony seems to present a lack of nuance. Of course, the other episodes in the first season of the series may contain some twists that turn around this first impression.
The first two episodes of CITADEL have a strong moral worldview. For instance, the characters are generally likable and upright, seeking to punish evil and promote the good. Also, the hero clearly prioritizes his family, saying, “You are all that matters to me.” However, the first two episodes have a lot of strong foul language, including a fair number of “f” words and two strong profanities. There’s also a scene where the Citadel director’s ex-wife introduces a woman as her current “wife.” Finally, the first two episodes of CITADEL have lots of intense, strong violence. Some of the violence is a little excessive. So, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution.
Please check MOVIEGUIDE®’s website for reviews of CITADEL’s other four episodes in Season One.
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