A review of Assassin's Creed.by Constable92J
The final nail in the coffin for video-game film adaptations?
The conversation regarding big-budget film adaptations of popular video-games has been done to death over the last 20-plus years, and with Duncan Jones’ Warcraft receiving a lukewarm reception upon its release last year, hopes were pushed even higher for Assassin’s Creed to succeed where its predecessors had not. However, despite the vast wealth of talent at its disposal, Assassin’s Creed feels more like the final nail in the coffin of the video-game film adaptation rather than the breath of fresh air that many hoped it would be.
The story follows Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender), a murderer on death row, until he is taken to a secret facility after his ‘execution’. There he meets Sophia Rikkin (Marion Cotillard), who plans to transport Cal into the memories of his 15th century ancestor Aguilar de Nerha, a member of the Assassin’s Brotherhood, to help locate a valuable artifact that will erase violence from the world.
Midway through the film Fassbender’s Cal asks, ‘What the fuck is going on?’. Never has that question resonated with audiences more when watching Assassin’s Creed, a film that forgets to have fun with its, quite frankly, ludicrous premise. Instead, Justin Kurzel, director of the critically acclaimed Snowtown and Macbeth, has delivered a boring and lifeless mess seriously lacking in character and personality.
There are flashes of Macbeth in some of the action scenes, with assassins disappearing and reappearing in the smoky haze of 15th century Spain, but these moments of ingenuity are too few and far between. Even the rooftop parkour chases drag on and on to the point of boredom, and yet these are quintessential ingredients to the Assassin’s Creed video-games. Oddly, the film centres around the characters in the modern day, with Fassbender’s Cal the driving force of the drama, especially during the long and arduous ending. Why the filmmakers felt drama was necessary for a film that revolves around stabby assassins and a time-travelling consciousness will forever remain a mystery to me.