Seventh Son

by | Feb 9, 2015 | 0 comments

Ugh

How could I possibly un-see that? How could you go so wrong on so many levels? Seventh Son had me go through three stages when seeing it: wanting the film to end, crying from the disrespect brought to the books, and wanting to get up and leave and demand a refund. I was at least looking forward to some good CGI, but even that was completely dismal.

Seventh Son is adapted from the famous British book series: The Spook’s Apprentice (or known in the US as The Last Apprentice Series). The books are about a spook (a man who fight creatures of the dark) set in English medieval times. After many failed and dead apprentices, the spook is putting all his remaining strength on one last boy: Tom Ward. The film follows the bleak storyline of the first book, and ends up mashing up crucial parts of other books from later in the series (character deaths, relationships, etc.). But worst of all, the film starts creating completely new things (a witch city, dragons, healing powers). The film had two quality actors with Jeff Bridges as the Spook and Julianne Moore as the evil witch nemesis Madam Malkin. There was even a brief cameo from Kit Harrington (Game of Thrones) as an earlier apprentice. But the forgettable performances of the lead roles with Ben Barnes as Tom Ward and Alicia Vikander as the predictable love interest Alice null the Hollywood legends. In fact both Julianne Moore and Jeff Bridges seemed to be doing the film simply for a laugh and an excuse to try on a new costume.

Before talking about the cinematic sins that the film committed, I would rather talk about the incredible mistake that the studio made. Such a cult YA series was not treated with care, its release was delayed a whole year, it had production problems, and the overall churning of the story was extremely forced. But the stupidity of the studio comes from relinquishing the secrets and storylines of other books in the series, and essentially ending the whole story and apprenticeship idea by the end of the film. The studio has given up sequels for a film that had the budget and aspirations of a blockbuster. If you don’t think the film is going to be successful: DON’T MAKE IT! For once I wanted the studios to think about money.

Cinematically the film is a disaster as well. Not only was the script horrible, but also the storyline was begging to be considered a cliché. The script tried to make the spook seem like an action karate wise-ass figure when in the book he is a silent and calm man full of secrets. Worst of all, the attempted jokes were all terrible, poor Jeff Bridges had all his lines encrypted with terrible overused and desperate humor. Julianne Moore’s villain is the most overused stereotype: seeking revenge and while slowly murdering the main character she reveals her evil plan and laughs maniacally, but of course at the last second the hero escapes and defeats her.

Moore and Bridges were completely insulted and embarrassed with the film. Both Hollywood legends are so dear to me, I not only wanted to stop watching and avoid scarring myself, but I wanted to cover up their faces from the audience, and try to hide their appearances in this silly excuse of a film.

The CGI meanwhile was trivial. I could see the different layers and some lazily un-computerized parts that maybe the animators were hoping we might not notice. Worst of all is that they tried to make the CGI seem cool and new, and it ended up bringing us to the meek beginings of CGI, using it to signifiy time passing and for mythical beasts. 

In conclusion, I have gotten something good out of the film, and that is that I’m going to go back and continue reading the series where I left off. I’d do anything to erase the memory of this film.  

  • OVERALL MOVIE RATING 3% 3%

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Adaptation

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Visual Effects

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Action

What is the most disappointing literary adaptation? Let me know in the comments section.

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