(X-posted to my journal)
I finally held my nose, plunged in and watched the movie Constantine.
Oh, right, I'm supposed to say something about it, aren't I?
Okay. The good news is I haven't blinded myself with an ice pick or run amok in the Warner Bros. building with a flamethrower. Yet.
This movie reminds me of a specific kind of fanfic: one of those AUs where everyone is so out-of-character you wonder why the author didn't just change the names and call it an original fic. Because this movie had far less to do with ol' Conjob than it did with Bladerunner, a couple of the Alien movies, Angel Heart... my gods, the list is endless.
I wish there had been some Endless in this movie. No such luck. Sigh. But there were some angels and demons, naturally. Tilda Swinton played the Angel Gabriel in a role very reminiscent of the Angel Islington from Neverwhere (put that one on the list too!). One of these days poor Tilda will get to play an actual human being of determinate gender. Until then, she put in a day or two of work and paid her rent and even though she basically phoned in the part, she was still the best character in the movie. The less said about the rest of the actors and characters, the better. Especially Keanu, with his Big Fuckin' Crucifix Gun of Holy Kick-Assitude.
No, really! He had a shotgun shaped like a crucifix. That alone almost made me go for the ice pick and the flamethrower.
On the other hand, the images of Hell were very reminiscent of Tim Bradstreet's covers for the Hellblazer comic. I only wish they had been as faithful to the spirit of the comic.
Honestly, I do know why they couldn't simply change the names and call it an original movie: they wanted to plunder Hellblazer canon. Because Hellblazer has some absolutely rockin' canon. And anyone who's been following John's career as long as I have can see tiny flickers and shadows of very famous moments of his history in this movie; they've been watered down and whitewashed and mashed to a pulp, but they're there. They're there enough so that if the names were changed, you'd have to call it plagarism. But it's a typical case of Hollywood castration -- the Powers That Be wanted to cash in on the Constantine cachet without actually having to get down and dirty with the old bastard himself.
I'm not going to start in on everything that was "wrong" with this movie, because if I started I would NEVER EVER STOP AND I WOULD TAKE A FLAMETHROWER AND AN ICE PICK AND ---
Instead, I'm going to say that for a whitewashed, watered-down generic Hollywood occult flick, Constantine doesn't entirely suck. Not entirely.
Other than that, I'll limit my comments to two:
First, it's Constan-TYNE, not Constan-TEEN.
And last, but not least, the final moment of the movie sums up everything that is wrong with this abomination of an adaption -- if that had really been John, truly John, that would have been a cigarette, not a goddamned stick of gum.