January 25, 2010

The Book of Eli (2010)

It seems that it is post-apocalyptic season, because just on the heels of The Road, comes the Hughes brothers' would-be Denzel epic, complete with dirty, toothless hillbillies and the requisite unspecified apocalypse that turned the earth into the set of Mad Max. Denzel plays a version of the magical negro that is so magical that he almost becomes Jesus, though is more like a combination of Jesus and Blade, complete with a holy knife of decapitation and permanently carrying a flask of his holy water. In fact the whole movie is a big sermon on the continued relevancy of the Christian bible, if not its validity, seeing as it is presented both as destroyer and savior of mankind. Eventually, Denzel's magic negro, like Jesus, ends up dying, resurrecting and going to heaven. Heaven of course being Alcatraz island and God is mustachioed Malcolm McDowell, maybe because the scriptwriter felt like there weren't enough metaphors and decided to shove some more down our throats. Of course the Denzel/Jesus/Blade ends up also being blind, like lady justice and I can only assume Mila Kunis is some hot piece of Mary Magdalene ass. Other than Tom Waits, whom, by virtue of being a singer in real life, ends up with the role of the guy who recharges Denzel's iPod 3G, the other good part of the cast is the wonderful Gary Oldman, who is perfect in the role of Carnegie, the obsessed warlord with the Kim Jong-il glasses that seeks to use religion as a weapon. Overall flawed and preachy, and I didn't even get started on the aesthetics, which seem to involve over-the-top greenscreen CG skies and overexposed barren deserts. A download at best.