Assassin's Creed is the latest video game to film adaptation that is absolutely pointless, missing the mark that made the video games popular, while also under-utilizing the assembled talent. Not even the great Michael Fassbender can save this bore-fest from derailing into the endless pile of video game movies that completely suck.
Assassin’s Creed is yet another case of a successful video game franchise jumping ship to the big screen and completely dropping the ball in almost every way imaginable. To say that Assassin’s Creed is a disappointment is severely under-cutting the failure of director Justin Kurzel and his team of “writers”.
Assassin’s Creed tries to translate the lengthy series of video games to the big screen in a way that feels confusing and mind-numbingly dumb. All you need to know is that Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender) is forced to access the memories of his ancient ancestors in hopes of finding the secretive Apple of Eden for an evil society.
Lynch’s relatives were all assassins, while the daughter-father team of Sofia (Marion Cotillard) and Rikkin’s (Jeremy Irons) bloodline were Templars — the rivaling society to the Assassins.
This might all sound rather simple to follow, but the film’s idea of explaining this comes in the form of scattered side characters and a story that’s occasionally focused and then mostly just kind of drifting off into pointlessness.
The worst offense Assassin’s Creed makes is forgetting to make you care about a single character. I’m serious, there’s never an explanation as to why you should care about Callum Lynch and that’s not even mentioning the fact that he was on death row for murdering someone.
His entire ancestry consists of murders and I guess the only real reason that makes them any better than the Templars is that they promote “free will” by way of slaughtering anyone that speaks up.
Why should we care about either side if all they do is kill for their own agenda?
Director Justin Kurzel doesn’t seem to really care about expanding on this problem or telling any sort of story that would make you give a damn. All he cares about is shooting flashy action sequences and shoot he does.
Some of Assassin’s Creed’s action is the type of high-octane stuff that gets the juices flowing, but none of it connects to a point in the story worth following. There’s lots of slashing of swords and jumping around rooftops, but why should we bother following any of Kurzel’s decently-shot set pieces if there’s no end game?
“Writers” Adam Cooper, Bill Collage and Michael Lesslie are credited for assembling this hunk of hot garbage onto paper and even that I’d say is a modest way of putting things. Just how hard is it to create one likable, worthy character to allow the audience to latch onto and follow from A to B?
And how the heck did you manage to take Oscar-caliber performers such as Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard and Jeremy Irons and turn their on-screen personas into boring piles of flesh?
Fassbender’s Callum Lynch might be one of the most uninteresting performances of the year, not to mention Fassbender’s worst role to date. It’s not that he doesn’t try, but it’s the fact that there’s nothing for him to try towards. His performance almost mirrors his on-screen character’s constant shadowing of a past relative. He’s simply walking the walk and talking the talk for the sake of getting a name on the end credits.
I’m sure he had a blast learning some martial arts and maybe even throwing himself across rooftops, but that would make his performance nothing more than a quick dose of thrill seeking for Fassbender.
Marion Cotillard and Jeremy Irons struggle keeping their eyes open and focused on Fassbender for most of the time, with Irons constantly looking like someone just woke up him from a nap or a horrible nightmare about him co-starring in yet another pointless video game adaptation…oh wait.
Cotillard at the very least gets to prove to the world that it is possible not to speak louder than a quiet whisper or move your facial muscles to the point of maybe emoting. It’s actually quite scary watching her do a solid impression of Fassbender’s very own David character from Prometheus.
Assassin’s Creed had the potential to bring a popular video game franchise to the big screen and in a big way, possibly expanding on the mythos of the character and introducing his friends in the process, but the end product is just another cash grab.
I’m not sure if Fox never cared about this film or if they simply misunderstood the entire concept from the very beginning, but Assassin’s Creed is yet another video game adaption that should’ve never happened and I pray to the cinema gods that we don’t have to relive this pain in the form of a sequel in a year or two.