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Movie Review: Legion

Prinz Lee image

Prinz Lee wrote this review 6 years and 4 months ago

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Written 1/23/10

Toilet paper should be made out of this movie’s photo stills.

(Sigh) I think coming off last week’s high and expressing The Book of Eli being one of the best films I know I would have seen this year… the exact opposite can be said for Legion. The only thing this film has going for it is intrigue before watching it… everything else… garbage! With a premise of God basically saying “Fuck you!” to the world due to all of mankind’s atrocities, I expected more… perhaps something a bit more cryptic or somewhat destructive in an apocalyptic way… well, the attempt was made with 2012, and even that was a bunch of bullshit cinema.

The attempt to turn The Bible into a viable screenplay is something with many complexities. I don’t think it’s anything that can just be done unless you’re some Jesus-freak who knows it inside and out. And even then, I would imagine nothing more than a biased approach. More and more we’re starting to see and hear the edginess regarding the end of days, and I really don’t think this would be the kind of genre a first time director (Scott Stewart) should be tackling. If anything, his entire attempt at smearing this across the screen was nothing more than a silent audience venturing their minds into a realm of bad acting and erratic editing.

In Legion “our maker” is sick and tired of the funny little muddle called Man, and he decides to send his flocks of ass-kicking angels down to exterminate the planet's population of two-legged roaches. Only problem is, these armored heavenly warriors with their sacrosanct weaponry can only possess the bodies of weak willed humans - not necessarily the best source for an Armageddon Army. However; seeing as there’s a part of humanity that doesn’t buy into the force-fed bullshit, these angels have no other choice but to prey on the weak-minded.

Disagreeing with his boss's decision, the Archangel Michael (Paul Bettany) falls to Earth, holes up in the Paradise Falls Diner (your standard viable cinematic business smack dab in the middle of nowhere) and vows to protect a young waitress named Charlie (Adrianne Palicki) and her unborn child. Along for the ride are a group of accidental storyline catalysts, including a father (Dennis Quaid) and son (Lucas Black), the cook (Charles Dutton), and a few patrons (Tyrese Gibson, Jon Tenny, Kate Walsh, and Willa Holland).

As God's winged assassins turn the locals into dead-eyed zombies, Michael waits for the eventual arrival of Gabriel (Kevin Durand), hoping he can save Charlie's child and thwart the end of times once and for all. Of course, how any of this is supposed to happen or why God chose such an unusual way to destroy the world is NEVER, EVER EXPLAINED.

A couple of questions arise such as…
1) Why that specific woman or woman’s baby?
2) If God’s tired of us… why send his demonic possessed angels and not do it him or herself?
3) Why demonic possessed angels? Isn’t that an oxymoron?

Legion is the perfect example of an "everything in the trailer" release. If you've seen it in the endlessly running ads, you've "seen it" in the film itself. That scary looking ice cream delivery demon that starts to stretch out and spidery? Seen it. The seemingly kind old lady that scampers across the ceiling like an evil elderly insect? Seen it. The little Omen-like boy who growls "fooled you" before noshing into Gibson's neck? You get the idea.

Something about this film I found pretty interesting was if it could not start cliche enough, the first dead is... well, the black guy. But wait, they stepped it up by killing the only other black guy second! Classic!

It's just a shame that such a promising premise is treated in such a sloppy manner. The idea of God sending angels down to battle against man in a Final Days free-for-all has potential. Sure, you'd have to find a filmmaker with the proper vision to realize such an epic undertaking (Stewart, sadly, is not one) and you'd have to cough up the cash to give the elements the properly otherworldly F/X sparkle. Legion is low budget all the way. It's also low brow, low IQ, and a low down dirty shame. No matter the tendency toward drought, famine, plaque and other Book of Revelation repercussions, one's deity deserves better films.



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