Red Sparrow is a spy thriller, and spy thrillers are ridiculous (to me). Actually, spying is ridiculous. I had to laugh at the silly code names, the black-and-white morality (“we” are 100% good and will win in the end; they are bad and will lose), and the prisoner exchanges at night on a bridge (really!) Laughing is not conducive to getting caught into the story.
So let’s think about the story. The supposed heroine is a Russian agent, specially trained as a spy seductress through long and voyeuristic (and boring!) chapters, but she is manipulated by everyone, especially the American agents, even though the story pretends she is high-spirited and in control of her destiny. We get a respectable romp through various European capitals (and Washington DC as well), lots of illicit sex, and a supposed love affair that seems entirely controlled by the handlers. There is lots of action, lots of blood, and lots of unlikely escapes. But yawn.