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Constantine

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Rachel Weisz, Djimon Hounsou and Tilda Swinton
Directed by: Francis Lawrence

 



Bluntly speaking? Riddle me this…how do you get talents like Rachel Weisz and Djimon Hounsou to agree to work aside Keanu Reeves - the poster child on plank acting - in a throwaway film that's based on the supernatural comic book series Hellblazer - a year after comic films were "in"? Maybe they were hoping for a leedle Spiderman franchise of their own…the rubber tree ant phenom strikes again...

Story goes…Detective Angela Dodson (Rachel Weisz) is a cop whose sister was murdered. She knows there's foul play a foot - the darkest foulist, feet.

She turns to John Constantine (Keanu Reeves) for help. Constantine's a sour-pussed oddball who is as unlikable as he is monotonous. But, he can also plainly see disguised demons that wander just below the streets of Los Angeles (and Morton's I think). His whole back-story shouldn't be picked it to closely or it could unravel like a cheap scarf. Apparently. Connie attempted suicide but wasn't quite evil enough for Hell and once you've got the suicide check in your Heaven entry you're suspect. So, pardoned (kinda) from Hell, he's now the reluctant anti-hero destined to show-up Beelzebub whilst helping the good detective to find her sister's killer.

Together they trip the script fantastic while venturing down the franchise churning rabbit hole of the been-there formulas; they head towards sort of Buffy the Vampire Land, while pit stopping continually in a Matrixville hued landscape, all while CGI demons and underworldy creatures attempt to launch the master plan…stealing souls of even the good folk and such nonsense.

Don't even get me started on this film's version of the big evil kahuna himself, Satan (Peter Stormare). I coulda swore I heard, 'Luck be a Lady Tonight' in the background whilst he graced the screen. He's neither frightening nor properly engaged in his world take over shenanigans.

Keanu Reeves, valedictorian alumn of The Nicolas Cage School of Acting; where the standing motto is, "One Expression Equals All Expressions" is genuinely mannequin-y here. Granted, Keanu as the same styled character in the Matrix Trilogy, was exceptional - the lad does bewildered Playstation-esque dude in formfitting latex well. But here the little blank fella lacked an exceptional story to confuse your more discerning eye.

Rachel Weisz is the only saving grace (and some of the cooler special effects) of this colossal waste of time. How she managed to hand in such a good showing amid the pooh-poo is beyond me.

Speaking of out-of-left-fieldisms in the film, Tilda Swinton shows as the uber archangel Gabriel to confuse the storyline a wee bit more. And as a Voodoo guy, indie darling and wasted talent, Djimon Hounsou, makes one's hair stick up briefly.

Save yourself the cash on this one; it's too silly to be scary and too stupid to be watchable. The special effects are good, especially the dramatic angel wings, but now the expected standard. Constantine is ultimately The Punisher guy angle set in Angel's neck of the woods.

Snack recommendation: Dinner at McDonald's, then Heffalump with the kids - now that's scary! (<- insert Psycho theme here)


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