Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Legion of reasons not to rush and see this film at the cinema...

Great advertising campaign, shame about the movie though.
Legion film poster
Once again it's one of those films where the trailer has all the excitement and there's not much else in the movie to entertain you for the entire 100 minutes.
Legion movie billboard
You can just see the pitch at the studio now. God has grown weary of humanity's ills and summons the apocalypse, sending a horde of angels to exterminate mankind.

Only one hope remains, an archangel who's cast from heaven for refusing to kill humanity's unborn savior. He and a diner full of misfits at Paradise Falls are all that remain to protect the future from Armageddon.
Legion movie posters
That's the synopsis and that's basically what you get on screen. Nothing more, nothing less. There really isn't that much more depth to it. Sadly it has a weak plot, barely any story, forgettable characters and questionable acting.

Even the lead, Paul Bettany, makes for an unremarkable action hero in the form of fallen archangel, Michael.
Legion film billboards
As alway the case in Hollywood film genres seem cyclical, and at the moment there are a few faith based movies knocking about on the big screen. I have to say though, I'd take the post-apocalyptic Book of Eli over Legion's fantasy-horror apocalypse.
Legion Charlie film poster
Anyway with this movie aside from a few surprises in the form of scary wall-crawling geriatric grannies and surreal visuals like long-legged ice-cream van drivers, it's the same old horror fare really.
Legion Tyrese Gibson film poster
Instead of zombies there are possessed humans, which look like demons (but are really angels), and some recycled concepts like flesh-eating children and profanity spouting old ladies. None of it seems particularly original.
Legion film posters
Even the wings of the angels like a bit cheap at times, which is a shame as they make for such a striking visual. But mostly they look like Brian Blessed's Prince Vultan's wings from the camp 1980 sci-fi movie Flash Gordon.
Legion Archangel Gabriel poster
Even the slew of familiar actors can't help the movie. Dennis Quaid, Charle S. Dutton, Tyrese Gibson are watchable but ultimately just disposable cannon fodder to deliver a few lines of dialogue before being killed off.
Legion Dennis Quaid film poster
Kate Walsh who plays Addison in TV's 'Private Practice' must have loved the part, as she gets to play quite an unsympathetic character, rather than being the one to save the day every time.

However I'm sorry to say that Lucas Black who plays nice-but-dim 'Jeep Hanson' in the movie is terribly miscast and doesn't seem to be able to act. He may have been great as a child actor in TV's 'American Gothic', but he's almost painful to watch in this.
Legion Jeep film poster
So in a nut-shell Legion doesn't have many new ideas and is only worth two ** stars at best. The emphasize my point simply watch the ending, which is a rip-off of Sarah Connor driving into an uncertain future in The Terminator, to illustrate just how lazy the filmmakers are.

I'd wait for this movie to come out on DVD rather than rush to watch it at the cinema. In the meantime for some really exciting angel and demon action doing battle to stave off the end of the world, watch the Winchester brothers in the intriguing TV show Supernatural.

One out of four films isn't a good average for 2010 new cinema releases, let's hope my next visit to the movies is more spectacular...

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