8:00 PM, 14th August, 2010
Margaret *** David **1/2
Approximately thirty years ago, a war tore a hole in the sky, leaving the Earth so sun-scorched that little can survive outdoors. It’s across the desolate wasteland that was once America that Eli (Washington) travels, on a mission to deliver a book. What he carries is no ordinary book however, and he’ll do whatever is necessary – even kill – to protect it.
Carnegie (Oldman) on the other hand is willing to do anything – especially kill – to get the book. As the self-appointed despot of one of the few remaining communities, he seeks the sacred tome so that he can harness its immense power. So when our mysterious traveller passes through his makeshift town, in possession of what he has been after for years, Carnegie will stop at nothing to relieve him of it.
Washington acquits himself nicely as the reluctant warrior, displaying a martial arts prowess and skill with a blade that will keep your eyes glued to the screen whenever he’s on it. And when he’s not, Oldman certainly more than fills the void as the power-hungry Carnegie and is a delight to watch as he pursues Eli across the country and chews up plenty of scenery along the way.
The Book Of Eli is stylish, attention-grabbing and one of best of the recent spate of post-apocalyptic thrillers. Be wary of an eleventh hour twist however, as it’s likely to determine whether you find the film completely implausible or incredibly clever. Either way, this is one not to miss.
10:12 PM, 14th August, 2010
Darkness is falling across the Earth. The reckoning is upon us.
The Archangel Michael (Bettany) is the only angel left with any faith in the goodness of humanity. In defiance of God’s wrathful instruction he descends to Earth, cuts off his wings, arms himself with a veritable arsenal of modern weaponry and heads towards a diner in the middle of nowhere, run by Bob Hanson (Quaid) and his son Jeep (Black). There he holes up with a handful of confused and angry humans, intent on defending a pregnant woman (Adrianne Palicki) he is convinced is pregnant with the messiah as the Angel Gabriel (Durand) unleashes wave after wave of seemingly demonic Angels to destroy the child.
Legion is an utterly ridiculous trashy action thriller, but despite this absurdity (in fact frequently because of it) it is a lot of fun to watch. The monsters are cool. The visuals are stylish. The action is guaranteed to get the adrenaline pumping, and is thankfully not all fast-cut CGI nonsense. The cast is surprisingly respectable for this sort of pap and their performances are spot-on, evidently all seeing the film for what it is. Legion is a real guilty pleasure.