Monday, March 1, 2010

The Book of Eli: Review

You lay that hand on me again, you ain't gone get it back *shing* *slice* *bloooood*
So The Book of Eli is about a lone man named Eli in this post-apocalyptic world, who's carrying this sacred book that has the secrets to save humanity. But there are other people who are after the book so Eli has to protect it from falling into the wrong hands.
Basic storyline, highly unoriginal and not to mention that said book is just a Bible.. But I really really really love this movie man. There was not a moment in this film that I didn't have my attention completely glued to the cinema screen. The opening 10 minutes of Eli just has him wandering around the wasteland looking for shoes and had no dialog and it was still as gripping and captivating as anything else in the movie.
The film was directed by the Hughes Brothers who did Menace II Society and my God, this is their peak. Eli is by far the best film they've made. The world they created in this movie is so captivating, so beautiful and so depressing to see at the same time. These guys really know how to direct action, even when there is nothing going on in the scene, the tension they bring is really remarkable.
And Denzel Washington man.. it's awesome to see him being a bad ass again. While I won't say he wasn't the best performance in here, he was the most interesting character. What we have here with Eli is the same thing we have with Clint Eastwood's The Man With No Name where we have this character that has so much depth and so much story to him but we know nothing about him.
Another thing I loved the hell out of Book of Eli was that if you thought about it, this is kind of like a classic Western. The setting is in this barren wasteland, main character comes to this town that has a whole lot of Western influences in it, there's the usual classic bar fight, there's the dispute between the main character and the evil sheriff of the town. I mean, everything you love about Western movies is in here. The Hughes Brothers took all the elements of a Western film and put it into a modern, violent, post-apocalyptic story.
And there are tonnes of homages Eli makes to classic Western movies that had me in geekgasms throughout. Folsom Prison, Showdown at Oak Carrol, Once Upon A Time In America and it has hella lots of references to A Boy and His Dog. These guys really know Western movies so I give them respect for that.
And I absolutely adore the art direction of Eli's post-apocalyptic world and dare I say it, it is one of the most nicely done post-apocalyptic environment I've seen in a film. And I've seen lots of Post-apocalyptic movies. Everything in Book of Eli was perfect.
I love the discoloration of the sky and how it makes everything look so bleak and dull. And keep in mind that this movie takes place in the desert and the sky colour had some sort of weird illuminating effect on the sand that was so beautiful and yet so uncomfortable to watch. And I kid you not, a few hours after I got home from the movie.. I fell sick. I don't know what it was about this movie but it really took a toll on me.
I enjoyed the hell out of this movie for the most parts and I could tell the audience I was watching it loved it to. It was only until they got to the end of Eli when it turned into a big ass Christian sermon. Hahahaha and I'm not joking okay, you could literally feel the energy get sucked out of the theater the moment Denzel began quoting from the Bible. Like you know how in churches where they have a nice Christmas play that was enjoyable but at the end the pastor comes out and starts preaching and you can't leave??
But you know what? If anyone was going to make a Christian movie, this is how they should make it. With that negro bad ass from Training Day slicing heads off bad guys with an African machete and have a tonne of cars blowing up all over you're face while negro bad ass quotes from the Bible. Now that's how you make a Christian movie!!
Just enjoy the movie for what it is and if you're not big on religion like I am, just tolerate it on that part, it doesn't go that far like other Christian movies I've seen.

RATING: 7/10

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