Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Book of Eli

The Hughes Brothers, 2010 (8.1*)
In a bleak, post-apocalyptic world not much different from the world of Mad Max, Denzel Washington plays a lone drifter named Eli, determined to follow his path of faith and deliver a secret book he's carrying to a place he's never been. Along the way, he comes across a town controlled by evil Gary Oldman, in one of his best performances, who's sending out patrols searching for all books in hopes of finding the one he desires, one that will give him control over the masses.

Oldman's slave, the blind Jennifer Beals (better than usual) is dependent on him while trying to protect her daughter, Mila Kunis, as much as possible, while Oldman uses her as a sex-slave to gain favors. There are some great small roles here filled by Tom Waits as the local pawn shop and engineer; Michael Gambon, who has survived with his wife and a minor arsenal; and the uncredited Malcolm McDowell as a curator of mankind's past.

Though maybe too violent for some, there are enough surprises in this story, good performances (from all except Kunis, whose talent and beauty totally escape me, I just don't see either), and a terrific electronic and futuristic music score, to make it better than the average apocalyptic dreariness, such as the dreadful The Road, from last year. In fact, add it to the imaginary list of top 10 post-apocalytic stories, as the pickings are lean after The Road Warrior.

2 comments:

joem18b September 3, 2010 at 3:09 PM  

i've heard that in the upcoming sequel, Washington and his mysterious book encounter a Muslim (played by Naveen Andrews)with his mysterious book. Will the two men hook up to establish a mini-library of mysterious books, or will they toss both books in a bag and see which one comes out alive?

Jose Sinclair September 4, 2010 at 7:40 AM  

pretty funny - but remember the library in the museum of culture? just another book on the shelf..

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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.



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