Director: Scott Stewart
Writers: Peter Schink and Scott Stewart
Cast: Paul Bettany, Lucas Black, Adrianne Palicki, Dennis Quaid, Charles S. Dutton, Tyrese Gibson, Kevin Durand, John Tenney, Willa Holland, Kate Walsh
Sometime in the not-so-distant future, God apparently gets “tired of the bull#@%&” and decides to wipe out his favorite creation. That would be us humans, just in case you were wondering. We are told this before the movie even starts by a voiceover (that for some reason is repeated at the end of the movie). So he sends down his legions of angels to wipe us out.
However, there is a savior for mankind growing in the womb of a waitress (Adrianne Palicki) tending tables in a café out in the middle of the desert. Michael the archangel (Paul Bettany) decides that we are worth saving, and goes against God’s orders and attempts to save humanity in said café out in the middle of the desert with only a stash of guns, the ragtag café patrons, owners, and employees, and the Magic Knife of Doom that came from the set of Supernatural.
This movie was watchable until the ending escape. That’s when it became a complete hot mess.
I am not a religious person. Let’s just get that one out of the way right up front. However, I am fascinated with forms of entertainment that rely on religious themes or elements. So obviously, I was pretty stoked about this movie. Unfortunately, I just couldn’t get into that suspension of disbelief to completely enjoy this flick even in a “popcorn movie” way. While it turned out to be kind of a hybrid of The Terminator and The Prophecy series, there were just too many questions going on for me (e.g., why are angels using humans as vessels if they can be killed by guns, or why is this one particular baby special) to really get into this movie all the way. There was one question right up front that never got addressed and possibly killed any suspension of disbelief I might have had:
Since God is sick of humanity and is ready to eradicate it, did Lucifer march his be-tailed ass up Jacob’s Ladder, saunter passed his brother angels through Heaven, walk right up to God (who’s chilling on his throne because that’s all he ever does) and give him a flat-handed “I told you so” bitch slap?
Not once is Lucifer mentioned and, I’m sorry, but this is pretty much his territory. This is his song and dance, right? I mean, if God’s going to do what Lucifer got thrown in The Pit for, uh, shouldn’t he have at least made a cameo appearance? Especially since it’s Michael this time that is going against God’s plan? Michael, the archangel who defeated Lucifer, is now doing what Lucifer did. In this respect, Legion falls far short of what The Prophecy manages to pull off.
I’m also a unabashed fan of super action shoot-’em-ups, but even these scenes felt oddly slow at times. Could have been the unnecessary slo-mo close-ups of spent rounds falling from various firearms, or just the ridiculousness that is shooting guns at angels, because the fight between Michael and Gabriel (Kevin Durand) was pretty good. The entire last third of the movie, though, had some action that was so over the top that even I couldn’t be like, “This could totally happen in the reality set up here.” Without giving too much away, let’s just say it was the reason I over-tip the waitstaff at restaurants and service people in general. I mean, you never know which one of them is going to be the next Sarah Connor or Kyle Reese and develop superhuman strength when the world needs saving.
There were some good moments, though. That old lady in the trailer? When she gets a frying pan in the face from Charles S. Dutton, I literally laughed out loud. I actually liked the exchanges between Michael and Gabriel on Earth and in Heaven. These, for me, were moments where the acting rose above the rest of the movie and made it believable. It’s just too bad they couldn’t continue throughout the whole movie.
Rating: 2.5 / 5 Stars