Legion (with Paul Bettany)

Apocalyptic and disaster films have been all the rage in Hollywood.  Some are really good and some are so poor that it’s surprising they actually made it to the big screen.  One thing that must be present is a good script, interesting characters and awesome special effects.  You can have two of these or in some cases one but when a film doesn’t have any of the aforementioned characteristics you can bet it will be a pretty terrible film, such is LEGION.

Dennis Quaid in Legion

God is sick of humanity and intends to wipe it out with his legion of angels.  One such angel, Michael (Paul Bettany) goes rogue and is on a mission to save an unborn child which will be mankind’s salvation.  Michael holes up with the pregnant mother and a mix of characters who are in a diner in the desert when the destruction begins.  The film is about their fight to stay alive and save the baby who has a death sentence from above.

Paul Bettany, Lucas Black and Dennis Quaid in Legion

Where to begin with the problems of this film…let’s start with the plot.  The plot is nothing special, it is as formulaic as a romantic comedy.  We can see what is happening and there are absolutely no surprises.  It was hard to tell which direction Scott Stewart was trying to take: thriller or horror?  The film was obviously supposed to keep us in suspense but the feel was of a cheesy horror flick with no virgin to save the day.

Doug Jones in Legion

The next problem was the characters and their development..or lack thereof.  The mother of the savior of humanity is a redneck girl who smokes, is obviously a slut and has no character arc, unless you count her discussing how she wanted to abort the baby and then unwillingly decides to keep it.  This isn’t a character arc and if a girl like this is about to bore a child so important, then we should all be scared.  Aside from Michael the surrounding cast has no other redeeming qualities so when they are picked off one by one throughout the film it’s difficult to care.

Paul Bettany, Lucas Black and Dennis Quaid in Legion

The last problem was the special effects.  There was so much more that could have been done it was disappointing.  It would have been better if they had so many scenes with special effects that it went over the top, instead what was used looked like the film was made in the 90’s as opposed to now.  The angel fight scene at the end was by far and away the most interesting aspect of the film.  If Stewart would have had more of those type of fights, the movie would have been so much better.  Instead he made the angels too demonic looking, which was supposed to make the audience more sympathetic to the characters. Thus the message that was supposed to be relayed to the audience was lost because we didn’t care who won the end battle.

Even though this is the sort of movie that I usually find myself liking just because it is so over the top bad I instead found it to be laughable and stupid.  If there was just one character I could have connected with I might have been able to stomach the movie, but as it is I’m annoyed that I spent almost two hours at a theater when this should have gone straight to DVD.


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