THE BOOK OF ELI
In the not-too-distant future, some 30 years after the final war, a solitary man walks across the wasteland that was once America. Empty cities, broken highways, seared earth--all around him, the marks of catastrophic destruction. There is no civilization here, no law. The roads belong to gangs that would murder a man for his shoes, an ounce of water--or for nothing at all. But they're no match for this traveler. A warrior not by choice but necessity, Eli seeks only peace but, if challenged, will cut his attackers down before they realize their fatal mistake. It's not his life he guards so fiercely but his hope for the future; a hope he has carried and protected for 30 years and is determined to realize. Driven by this commitment and guided by his belief in something greater than himself, Eli does what he must to survive--and continue. Only one other man in this ruined world understands the power Eli holds, and is determined to make it his own: Carnegie, the self-appointed despot of a makeshift town of thieves and gunmen. Meanwhile, Carnegie's adopted daughter Solara is fascinated by Eli for another reason: the glimpse he offers of what may exist beyond her stepfather's domain. But neither will find it easy to deter him. Nothing--and no one--can stand in his way. Eli must keep moving to fulfill his destiny and bring help to a ravaged humanity.
Director: Allen Hughes , Albert Hughes
Cast: Denzel Washington , Gary Oldman , Mila Kunis , Ray Stevenson , Jennifer Beals
Release Date: Jan 15, 2010
Rated R for some brutal violence and language
Runtime: 1 hr. 58 min.
The Hughes Brother’s have always had more talent than they’ve been given credit for, kind of lost in the mix and failing to make their mark after their break through film Menace 2 Society. The Book of Eli, unfortunately, won’t leave any sort of lasting impression either. Dour and lacking any sort of real heart, this overly serious and only occasionally interesting post apocalyptic road movie thinks it’s a lot more important than it actually is. The script has a message and the screenwriter could have taken some interesting angels on the subject matters of faith and religion in general, instead we get generic heroes and villains dialogue with a fairly pain by the numbers action sequences. The Hughes Brother’s shoot the film with enough style to give it an impressive if overly glossy look throughout even if we are left with the impression that the end of the world looks like Arizona. Denzel Washington is the strongest player in the entire film. He plays Eli with serious single mindedness vigor, giving the character a depth that isn’t in the script. It’s a shame he’s mostly wasted because I think that he could have done something interesting with a meatier more interesting take on the general concept. Washington plays his dutifully and looks believable during the films action sequences. Mila Kunis isn’t asked to do much in her role, much like the rest of the ancillary characters. Gary Oldman is asked to play a one dimensional villain and no one could fault for collecting a play check here. Ray Stevenson and Jennifer Beals are thoroughly wasted barely say a word. If you’d seen the more enjoyable classic The Road Warrior or the more thoughtful and gut wrenching The Road then there’s really no reason to waste your time here outside of waiting for a ludicrous curve ball at the end of this film.