Review: Citadel (2023) Is A Fun Action Spy Thriller.

If you liked Captain America: The Winter Soldier or Kingsman, then don’t bother reading the rest of this and just watch Citadel, because you’ll enjoy it.

The series channels the spirit — and many, many of the elements — of both films quite well, but manages to combine them in different ways that keep it from feeling overly predictable. There are very definitely some "standard" shots that you’ve seen before — the first sweeping view of a train rushing past a mountain is very familiar, for example — but instead of feeling like it’s just a retread with the serial numbers filed off, it instead feels like when you combine several LEGO sets into a new, but still oddly familiar, creation.

Priyanka Chopra Jonas and Richard Madden give solid performances both in terms of character development and action sequences (I was pleased to learn that Chopra Jonas did many of her own stunts) — and thank goodness that, for the most part, the series avoids the "you can only fight people of your own gender" trope. The plot has plenty of twists and turns, and more than that, it was fun to watch — something that I cannot really say about the last several films in the Bond franchise.

Citadel is not a deep thinking kind of series; it’s very definitely in the "action popcorn" genre, but it is a good exemplar of the genre. You can watch Citadel streaming on Amazon.

One small side note: The extensive marketing around the series is quite annoying. Amazon is very interested in getting people completely involved, with links to "shop the fashion" or music of the show, dozens of featurettes that the company pushes at you, and the like. If you’re into that sort of thing, great. Otherwise, do like I did and just skip them entirely.