Thursday, November 25, 2010

Centurion Review

Centurion, 2010
Reviewed by: Dan S.
Director: Neil Marshall
Written By: Neil Marshall
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Olga Kurylenko.
Language: English

Centurion is a quick and dirty historical chase movie featuring great looking costumes, brutal battlefield gore effects, and the very real grueling elements of Northern Scotland. These majestic but desolate ancient locations dominate the movie, often rendering the actors tiny ants in the distance. On the rare occasions we get intimate with the cast, the frostbite visible on their skin is no special effect and their shivering certainly isn't acting, this is some hardcore guerilla filmmaking from rising genre director Neil Marshall. Framed with complex jump editing and shaky camera work, the violent multi-weapon action that dominates the movie is hard hitting and authentic feeling.

As the central antagonist Olga Kurylenko's gives an intense silent performance, her startling stare conveying both rage and tragedy. Unforunately, the rest of the cast fails to make much of an impression with even some of the cliché stock characters blurring together. Leading man Michael Fassbender is terribly dry, and even with sporadic "stating the obvious" mood killing narration you can't really connect with the guy. While the film is exciting when it's rolling the narrative is lurching on fumes by the closing act, and the precious few slow scenes feel like painful abrupt stops rather than welcomed breathers. The unique spectacle of the movie is worth seeing but it isn't a very satisfying film experience overall.


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