Sunday, February 20, 2005

Constantine (2005)

I went on Friday night with 2 friends to see Constantine. Neither one of them is a Keanu fan. Amy hated the movie. She said it wasn't the worst movie she'd ever seen, but that's the highest praise she can give it. LOL Maryann said it was better than she thought it would be.

But me?? I did like it. I don't think it's my favorite Keanu film, although I am feeling a draw to go back and see it again.

This is not the kind of movie I would usually go see, and, yes, I will admit that it was Keanu who was the main attraction for me. I wasn't sure I'd go see it even with Mr. Reeves as the main character, but I had heard discussions about the spiritual aspect of the film beforehand and this convinced me to go. I wanted to see how Hollywood would manage to do a film like this with spiritual themes. Would it be effective? Convincing? Would it draw people closer to God or push them away?

Ok, a quick plot summary for those of you who haven't been eagerly anticipating this film for months and months. John Constantine is an exorcist, destined for hell due to a failed suicide attempt as a teenager. He is trying to earn his way back into heaven by performing exorcisms and sending demons back to hell. Enter Angela, a police detective whose twin sister has apparently committed suicide. Angela has her doubts about this and enlists the help of Constantine, which sets in motion a chain of events that eventually leads to a infernal showdown. The movie is based on a comic book called Hellblazer.

Many parts of the film were just mesmerizing. I could barely breathe at some points. For instance, Angela and John are attacked by demons outside his apartment. She says, "What IS that?" And he answers, "Wings. And talons." And then.... oh I won't give it away. But - Wow. I had seen this entire scene online before. But - oh my - on the big screen. And that isn't be all!

Keanu was awesome. He really portrayed Constantine's despair and confusion. He has the hardboiled world-weary attitude down pat. We're not meant to like John Constantine. And we don't. But then, we do! It doesn't hurt that he's some nice eye candy as well!

Rachel Wiesz looked luminous as Angela. One very funny moment between Angela and John happened during the bathtub scene. Wiesz has starred with Keanu before, in Chain Reaction, but this pairing far exceeded the previous one.

Shia LaBeouf was funny as Chas. His role as John's apprentice allowed him some funny moments begging John to let him do more of the real work.

I did NOT like Gabriel's character. Tilda's mischievous androgenous portrayal was great, but I thought that the character unnecessarily complicated the story and even caused it to be illogical.

I did find myself wishing for subtitles, as a lot of the best lines were hard to hear. This movie surely has "SEQUEL COMING" written all over it! lol

The film's theology is inaccurate at best, but it is a gripping story and I think it will have a lot of people thinking about spiritual issues. The movie is not for the faint-hearted, though, I will say, and profanity, violence, and demonic images make it inappropriate for children. If you are wondering whether or not you should see it, go ahead, but whenever Constantine says, "Shut your eyes," obey!

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