|The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen|
The more you think about the film, the more it falls to pieces. It's riddled with logistical and continuity errors that keep the audience continually uttering "Huh?" while the story veers from comic book excess to over-serious Hollywood mush. Connery doesn't bother to play the role at all, and his character throws the film off balance, taking over the story with unnecessary subplots and moments of meaningful heroic gibberish as he passes wisdom to the young Sawyer. Oh please! The rest of the cast camp it up frightfully but without a sense of humour; we never like any of them. The film is bereft of wit, despite attempting several lame jokes. And this is the biggest problem: For a tale that depends on a suspension of disbelief, it's completely lacking in fun and adventure. Director Norrington just powers forward mindlessly, full of self-important posturing even though it's ridiculous (I mean honestly, the car and submarine alone will generate hours dialog about the film's logical incongruities). Meanwhile, Robinson's script is derivative, corny and full of irksome anachronisms. The effects are impressive and completely inappropriate, driving the story instead of the other way round (Mr Hyde's rubbery Hulk-like figure is a serious misstep, especially this summer!). Everything is just completely wrong about this film--production design, editing, you name it. And if I have to say one good thing, well ... it's not boring for a second!
dir Stephen Norrington|
scr James Dale Robinson
with Sean Connery, Richard Roxburgh, Stuart Townsend, Peta Wilson, Shane West, Jason Flemyng, Naseeruddin Shah, Tony Curran, Terry O'Neill, Max Ryan, Tom Goodman-Hill, David Hemmings
release US 11.Jul.03; UK 17.Oct.03
Victorian superheroes: West and Connery plot (above), while Wilson and Townsend spar (below)
|Hadassah, net: "Having only paid a dollar to see this movie, I can't say that I feel ripped off. And it was a very enjoyable movie, even if it didn't live up to my expectations. I saw Darth Vader and Freddy Kreuger ripoffs in the Fantom (dark masks and burned skin). Having read almost all the books this was based off of, I saw a few things that others might not pick up on. One scene involving the Nautilus was so fake-looking as to appear animated. The plotline itself was weak, and fewer nighttime scenes would have been appreciated. And what was a vampiress doing using a compact mirror? There were some pleasant surprises, and Mina's line, "You broke my heart once, this time you missed," was my favorite piece of dialogue. The movie got better halfway through, but I'm pretty sure Stevenson never intended for Mr Hyde to look like the Hulk. I can say in all fairness, if they had made the funereal scene a bit more touching, and left out the ending sequence, I would have left entirely happy. As it is, I'd happily go see it again." (1.Nov.03)|