Through Abstergo a company that creates a revolutionary technology that unlocks his genetic memories, Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender) experiences the memories of his ancestor, Aguilar de Nerha (Aguilar Of Nerha), in 15th Century Spain. Callum discovers he is descended from a mysterious secret society, the Assassins and Templars, and amasses incredible knowledge and skills to take on the oppressive and powerful Templar organization in the present day.
What sounds in the description like a bad Dan Brown novel spiced up with some video game elements is indeed neither of those. I can freely admit I’d never played the game (and until they produce Free Cell – The Movie you can assume I’d never played any game that a movie was based on). And up to now I was always pleasantly surprised by the resulting movies.
Okay, the grandfather of game movies, Final Fantasy was a bit bland on the drama side but had jawdropingly accurate character design and dreamlike sequences that are outstanding still today. Milla Jovovich’s Resident Evil zombie flicks were always great entertainment and WoW was in fact was not as bad as we feared it would be.
But Assassin’s Creed? Oh my, what was that? Look at the cast: Outstanding for such a B-Movie. Everybody’s new darling and quirky wonder actor Michael Fassbender, the highly overrated Marion Cotillard in a better performance than in Allied. And Jeremy Irons, Brendan Gleeson and Charlotte Rampling in supporting roles. Sounds good, right?
Well, it wasn’t. The time jumps between Callum Lynch in the here and now and his ancestor Aguilar de Nerha really didn’t work as supposed and leaving the present day scenes as clear losers to the much more exciting stuff of the past.
Yes, all the runnyshoutyshootyfightyparcoury stuff happens when Callum is strapped into a machine that tosses his body around as he experiences what Aguilar did centuries ago. For whatever strange reasons they picked the year 1492 and wrote Chris Columbus into the script, it escapes me and leaves me scratching my head.
The whole machinery makes no sense whatsoever and is just a very poorly developed plot vehicle to bring past and present together. Well, Ubisoft, it didn’t work! The melange is unnecessary and just gives the movie a needlessly anaemic style. Quite the contrary did happen: All the intercuts between Aguilar jumping from rooftops and Callum getting tossed around in his harness-like apparition took me out of the movie rather than reminding me of what’s going on.
The result was as bland and boring as can be. This movie doesn’t even have a great finale, a boss fight. It just trickles away, like sand in the hourglass and when in the last scene we see modern days assissins looking out over London from some rooftop we stopped caring long ago.
Bad screenplay and sub par direction ruin a well-meant, very nicely cast movie. Where the few other game-based movies I’ve seen did at least give us great entertainment in their own trashy ways, AssCreed falls flat. Movie sin #1: It was fuking boring. 😮 The IMDb rating of 6.1 is much too friendly for such a stupid flick.
No. The few pretty nicely choreographed action scenes where too few and far between lots of really really bland stuff.
WHAT THE PROFESSIONAL ART CRITICS SAY:
Looksie, Jeremy’s opinion is the same as Orca’s. What a cool guy. 🙂
Stuckman found it terrible as well. Love him.
Mark Kermode with an astonishingly soft and forgiving review of this trainwreck.