Cinematic Releases: Someone Get Me An Apple - Assassin's Creed (2016) - Reviewed

Video game movies have had an extremely hard time cracking the cinematic market. From the mixed mediocrity of the Resident Evil series to the absolute dregs of Alone in the Dark to the diverse criticism of Warcraft, the transition to from gaming platform to the silver screen has never been anything of sheer greatness. 

With Assassin's Creed nothing has changed. The film is an excursion into the bowels of boredom's belly that's not even close to being saved by a cast of name actors that have no idea what they're doing in a big budget flop of this magnitude. Starring Fassbender, Cotillard, and an emotionally neutered Jeremy Irons, this gaming movie is nearly dead on arrival. The sets look great and the effects definitely serve the purpose of bringing it to the theater. However, the overall execution is what falters. Instead of sucking us into the dimensions of the game. Explanations are hampered. And the narrative is far too casual. 

Assassin's Creed is a glaring example of a director being handed too high a budget and a script that should have never made it to the production stages. The movie goes nowhere and does nothing. If you want to spend nearly two hours looking at Marion Cotillard blankly staring off into space for no good reason, this is your chance. Time is wasted in scene after scene of the lovely actress looking up, glaring at the nothingness in front of her. It's a way to kill time and a way to induce audiences into a sleepy theatrical coma. By no fault of their own, these talented stars are all wasted on an amateurish film marred by the poor decisions of a director better suited for drama and arthouse cinema. When you have Brendan Gleeson, Charlotte Rampling, and Michael Kenneth Williams in your supporting role wheelhouse, you'd expect a quality flick. Not the case here. 

Michael Fassbender is one of the best actors of his generation. Why he took this role is quite apparent. It was strictly a paycheck. There's no dialogue for him to chew on and there's no character development other than a few moments of dull build up to a story that's lacking any intrigue or delivery of a solid mythology. Why not use him to effect a proper translation of the game? Assassin's Creed plays more like a late fall release than a Christmas holiday blockbuster. It's boring. It's sloppy. And the pacing meanders as the action sequences are too few and too far between. For a movie based on a title that's high on fight content, this franchise launch will most likely give movie fans two things: a headache and a direct to video sequel starring some B grade actor.

I brought protection. After we battle these baddies, we should hook up. 

While some of the visuals are nice to look at and the (few) actual actions scenes are well choreographed, there's not enough content to fill out the run time. Within the first half hour, it's apparent that something is off. Assassin's Creed needed a few rewrites, better editing, and a little more heart in the directorial department. I think the loyal following of the video game series will definitely find some things to latch on to. And they'll definitely enjoy it way more than I did. Admittedly, I've only played the game a few times. However, this type of film franchise should be able to satisfy both the die hard game players and should give the casual movie goer a sense of entertainment. Assassin's Creed definitely fails in that department. 

For the ladies, Michael Fassbender is shirtless for most of this movie. So, there's that.