Last night, I decided to revisit one of my childhood’s memories of a movie. This one being The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, available on Disney plus. When a chunk of the budget goes towards Sir Sean Connery, and you realize they had to use that remaining amount to hire other actors, stunts, editing, and all that other jazz that goes into making a movie… It’s actually not that bad for what it is. Especially considering these days when having shit writing is okay as long as everything else looks pretty. If only 20th Century Fox had the level of bots, and ownership of media companies, as some people these days. Maybe then we could look past the over-the-top silly narrative. But then we look over at Marvel Studios, and can’t help but notice that some movies and characters look very uh, similar…
The characters in the movie are different than the actual characters they’re based upon, from both the original author’s works and the source comic material. One might daresay it tried to come up with an original twist on it all. Allan Quatermain is a hunter with the impeccable ability to never miss his shots (unless he wants to). Hello, Hawkeye. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as a scientist that takes an elixir that changes him into a hulking brute with its own personality and consciousness. Hello, Hulk. An invisible thief that provides comedic charm to it. Mina Harker as a vampire badass that despises the evil inside her. Hello, almost Blade. Tom Sawyer as the American gunman that sprays all his shots merely hoping to hit the target. Hello, you know what institution. My favorite, Captain Nemo with his giant ship/submarine, and his army of Indian soldiers/pirates. Yea, I can see why this might be a hard sell. Dorian Gray as an immortal, wealthy douchebag. Hello, investors.
These fellas, and lady, all team up to stop a rich merchant of death from profiting from even more war. In a totally alternative world where only this kind of stuff exists there, this villain blows up various structures, kills innocents and places evidence framing a foreign nation in order to try and create a world war. Oh man, the profits that villain would stand to gain. Back to the movie, it had some great action scenes that were just simply ridiculous yet funny to watch. You could see had they only hired a more competent writer, or even director, this movie could have got a sequel. There are glimpses of awesomeness in it. Sir Sean Connery is always fun to watch. Shane West doing his job as the American heartthrob to draw in American audiences and help them be interested in the story. Peta Wilson as the Vampire dressed in leather (beating out Underworld by 2 months). Tony Curran was enjoyable as a smarmy, loveable bastard. Stuart Townsend as the cunt, and I could visually see why they’d wanna initially hire him as Aragorn way back when. Jason Flemyng was clearly having a delight playing the troubled doctor having concerns about trusting the monster inside of him. Especially during the transformation scenes. Those look like it took hours to apply him his make-up and costume. Naseeruddin Shah was fantastic as the martial art badass sending bad guys flying with mere kicks. His commanding presence was a joy amongst the silliness.
Honestly it all comes down to the writing and story direction as it being a failure. Yet, it had diversity for once with a brown action hero. Clearly that should have excused it from any wrongdoings, and audiences should have flocked to watch it otherwise they’re racists or intolerant. This movie deserves a sequel, or a remake. In a time of super-powered characters gracing the screen, these characters would fit right in.