Monday, January 18, 2010

Book of Eli- She said

I went into The Book of Eli with no expectations. I like Denzel Washington and Gary Oldman, so I thought it was a win-win situation. The movie starts in this bleak post-apocalyptic world where everyone wears sunglasses…at all times. At first, I assumed it was to look like a badass in this world, but as it turns out, the atmosphere became thinner after “the great flash”, so apparently the sun has become more harmful. Eh, it makes Denzel look even cooler, so I’m okay with it. So, Denzel, or Eli, is traveling west on a mission carrying and rereading this book along the way. He conveniently comes to this town where Gary Oldman is the head-honcho and low and behold, he’s looking for the exact same book. It takes about half the movie to set this whole scenario up, which unfortunately didn’t leave much time for the meat of the movie.

The movie then goes into the battle of faith from the sides of the extremists, Oldman, and righteous, Eli. At this point, I was excited because this is what the movie’s message. How does faith affect the human existence and culture after such a horrific tragedy? Do you run to faith and lean on it? Or do you blame faith for the misgivings? The movie hinted at all of these questions, but it never delivered. After one conversation, nothing deep or philosophical was ever really brought up again. It just went back to Oldman’s obsession with possessing the book.

The look of the world is amazing. It’s dry, bleak, bright, yet dreary and empty. All in all, I was satisfied with the acting performances. There’s a revelation at one point that definitely makes you think about certain things from the movie. With that aside, the movie seemed like it wanted to be this deep religious debate about importance of faith during a time of war; however, the idea was never fully developed. Eli is worth the watch, and it could spur some interesting debates. I just wanted more from it.

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