Legion — despite a few redeeming performances – has too many flaws overall to make the post-apocalyptic thriller successful.
The film centres on a world where humanity’s saviour is the unborn child of a waitress and an angel Michael (Bettany) has sacrificed his immortality in hopes of redeeming the human race. The result is a two-hour film with the characters locked in a diner fighting off external and internal demons.
Legion holds a lot of potential as a film as it starts off strong. However, it falls short due to several hindering factors.
The main issue with Legion lies in too many characters with too much to say. There is a lot of internal conflict within each individual and the film fails to fully expand on any one.
Furthermore, the formulaic dialogue may induce some eye rolling.
Finally, poor performances from Quaid and Black make it hard to truly appreciate the film’s concept. The motives of the characters are unclear and never fully developed.
The film also has too many slow points between action sequences. The monologues are extensive and hollow, never really offering anything but melodrama. As the film progresses, the action scenes diminish exponentially, never really delivering the excitement Legion promises.
The ending of the film also falters, as it doesn’t offer any real closure and seems like a result of poor budgeting and script writing. It is as if the screenwriter ran out of ideas in the midst of writing and opted for every clichéd outcome imaginable— Legion ends like most other horror or action movies created to date.
Bettany’s angelic character may be the only redeeming factor within this film. He delivers his lines with conviction and is truly impressive. There were also some standout performances from Kate Walsh (of Grey’s Anatomy fame) and Charles S. Dutton. Unfortunately these characters’ roles are minor and their talent is never fully exploited except in brief monologues.
The cinematography of the film is also impressive for this particular genre, using close-ups to highlight the internal demons of the characters and development of the story. With this said, the action shots are filmed poorly, and are usually too complex and out of focus. The poor editing especially contributes to the confusion of the fight sequences. The shots are disjointed which makes it hard to appreciate these scenes.
Overall, the movie starts out strong yet loses momentum after the first real wave of action. Legion may be suitable for renting — however, as a film in its entirety it falls short. If anything, viewers may enjoy Bettany’s performance.