The ‘Atomic Blonde’ Trailer: No One Kicks Ass Like Charlize Theron

The greatest action star on the planet

One thing that’s becoming clearer with each passing day is that Charlize Theron is our greatest living action star. Any doubts you may have about that statement will be put to rest within the first 30 seconds of the new trailer for Atomic Blonde, Theron’s upcoming hard-core spy thriller. In one extended take (editor’s note: in the movie, which we saw last week, this take goes on, and on, and on, and is far more brutal than what you see here), Theron, playing British M16 operative Lorraine Broughton, kicks ass and gets her ass kicked in equal parts, which raises the stakes and is part of the sequences (and the movie’s appeal).

Based on the graphic novel The Coldest City and very much intended as a franchise starter for Theron, Atomic Blonde follows her around Berlin right around the collapse of the Soviet Union. That means the wall is coming down and the city has become a chaotic and dangerous place. She heads there to retrieve a valuable list that was stolen by the Russians, and once there, she hooks up with another spy named David Percival, played by James McAvoy. Together they must retrieve the list and blah blah blah. The plot here doesn’t matter. What matters is Charlize Theron, strutting around Berlin and savaging anyone who dares get in her way. 

Atomic Blonde crashes into theaters on July 28.