Video game properties have not been very successful in their transitions to Hollywood films, but Assassin’s Creed hopes to change all that as 20th Century Fox set to release their highly anticipated film this Christmas. This action packed thriller is set in the same universe as the video games but features an original story that expands the series’ mythology. Will Assassin’s Creed win over gamers and regular audiences alike or will the complexity of the story be lost on those unfamiliar with the popular game?
Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender) is a man who has reached the end of the line. Having faced the death of his mother at the hands of his own father, Cal has lived a life of crime that has lead him to a stay on death row. After having his execution stage by Abstergo Industries, the modern-day incarnation of the Templar Order lead by Alan Rikkin (Jeremy Irons) and daughter, scientist Sophia Rikkin (Marion Cotillard), Cal learns of his family lineage which dates back hundreds of years to the Assassin’s Creed, a group of fighters sworn to protect an ancient artifact. Cal is forced to participate in the Animus Project, a device which helps him link with his ancestor Aguilar de Nerha, an Assassin in the time of the Spanish Inquisition, and relive this memories in order to locate the ancient artifact. As Cal continues to experience Aguilar’s memories, he begins to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to confront the Templars in the present day and help stop them from locating the artifact that will allow the Rikkin’s to control free will.
Director Justin Kurzel makes up for the films lack of a coherent story and has elected for a visually stunning action film that overcomes its shortcomings to be very entertaining. Michael Fassbender embodies Aguilar and his ancestor Cal as if he is playing a Jekyll and Hyde of sorts. The highly regarded actor is lacking in the need to deliver any dialogue of merit, but his presence alone speaks volumes in the action sequences. Marion Cotillard and Jeremy Irons, two stellar actors who are underwhelming in the powerful adversary category which is where the film begins to lose its luster. The action sequences and cinematography when the focus is on Aguilar are breathtaking and some of the best you’ll ever seen on screen, but as we witness the transformation of Cal into assassin, there’s little in the modern world to compete.
Overall, Assassin’s Creed is highly entertaining with it’s action packed fight sequences and it’s visual effects, but the story is lacking at times which ultimately leads to a conclusion that may leave some wanting more. Still, it’s a franchise that has promise and should be given an opportunity to continue. Let’s just try and use the talents of these wonderful actors a bit better shall we?
3 out of 5
After Credit Scene?