Director: Scott Charles Stewart
Cast: Paul Bettany, Dennis Quaid, Tyrese
Gibson, Jon Tenney, Lucas Black, Kate Walsh, Doug Jones, Charles
S. Dutton, Adrianne Palicki, Kevin Durand, Willa Holland
RunTime: 1 hr 40 mins
Released By: Columbia TriStar
Rating: NC-16 (Some Violence and Coarse Language)
Official Website: http://legionmovie.com/
Opening Day: 21 January 2010
the supernatural action thriller "Legion," an out-of-the-way
diner becomes the unlikely battleground for the survival of
the human race.
When God loses faith in Mankind, he sends his legion of angels
to bring on the Apocalypse. Humanity's only hope lies in a
group of strangers trapped in a desert diner and the Archangel
Michael (Paul Bettany).
you believe that God will one day decide to abandon his beloved
creation, humankind? Would you believe that just as He once
sent his angel Gabriel to herald the coming of His promised
saviour, God would also send Gabriel and the rest of his angels
to annihilate the human race? Would you believe that once
more, hope would lie in a child yet to be born? Those are
big 'ifs', and here’s another- if you’re going
to watch "Legion", you’d best be prepared
to accept them.
to "Legion", God will get disillusioned, decide
enough is enough and send his angels to destroy mankind. But
one angel will realise that he will do what God needs, not
what God wants and clip his wings (literally) to fight on
the side of the human race. That angel is the archangel Michael
(Paul Bettany), who will find himself defending a group of
humans trapped in a diner, including a eight-month pregnant
woman named Charlie (Adrianne Palicki) whose baby is to be
some kind of saviour.
so you know, the baby’s father has apparently skipped
his parenting duties, leaving the kind-hearted Jeep Hanson
(Lucas Black) to take care of her and the baby. The reference
to Biblical salvation is unmistakable, and director and co-writer
Scott Stewart could easily have made it smart or just plain
dumb. Unfortunately, Stewart’s approach is the latter.
Conveniently lifting from the pages of the Book, Stewart never
bothers to explain in his film the significance of the unborn
child or convey how or why the rest of the characters seem
to suddenly believe that they have to protect the child.
"Legion" was never meant to be an intelligent end-of-days
thriller- nevertheless, as a pure popcorn action flick, it
also fails to satisfy. There is all but two big action sequences
in the movie- first when the group of strangers trapped at
the desert diner Paradise Falls (get it?) encounter the fallen
angel Michael; and second when Gabriel (Kevin Durand) comes
to finish what Michael was sent to do. In between, nothing
really happens- so like the characters in the story waiting
for that final showdown, we too are left waiting for something,
anything actually, to happen.
that waiting could have meant something were it not for Stewart
and co-writer Peter Schink’s dull screenplay that attempts
some kind of characterization for what are essentially stock
types in such a genre picture but fails. Thanks to some very
cheesy lines, not the cynical hero of sorts (Dennis Quaid),
the good guy with a past (Tyrese Gibson), the God-fearing
evangelist (Charles S. Dutton) or the troubled family (Jon
Tenney, Kate Walsh or Willa Holland) are any more interesting
than their equivalents Hollywood screenwriters are oft to
is little payoff at the end too, for what is supposed to be
a climatic fight between one angel and another is lost amidst
a blur of shadows, close-ups and quick cuts. So what "Legion"
really has and squanders is a group of actors who put in their
best despite the material. Paul Bettany is front and centre
here as Michael, and he looks convincingly tough and chiselled
for the role. Dennis Quaid is ever reliable, even though it
looks like he could have played his part with his eyes closed.
you would believe that with such a capable cast assembled
and an intriguing premise that "Legion" would be
quite the apocalyptic thriller. You would however have thought
wrong, for director Scott Stewart’s good stopped at
the idea (which probably attracted the cast). With little
buildup, bad dialogue (and story), and a disappointing climax,
you can be sure that "Legion" won’t find its
legion of fans anytime soon.
(No wonder God got angry at mankind- look at the kind
of bullshit he came up with)
Review by Gabriel Chong