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A 2010 apocalyptic-thriller film directed by Scott Stewart

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A fun concept executed with complete ineptitude

  • Dec 22, 2010
  • by
LEGION was never going to be a great movie. But it should at least have been FUN. Sadly, it is a poorly written, poorly acted bore.

The concept, while ridiculous, could have led to a crazy, over-the-top action fantasy. Apparently, the angels of heaven have been directed to begin the apocalypse, because God and the angels are just so fed up with how awful mankind has become. (I have to point out that this is kinda what happened prior to Noah and his flood, and after that, God sent his rainbow as a promise to never wipe out mankind again. Wow, we've really come off the tracks if God is breaking these promises.) But there IS a loophole. If this one particular baby, being carried by unwed mother Adrienne Palicki (from TVs FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS), is born, the world will be saved. So naturally, the angels have a target on the back of that baby. And this baby's mom is located in the most out-of-the-way, desolate roadside diner in all of America, so that a small but varied group of movie stereotypes can engage in a battle with the fast approaching angel assassins. But Archangel Michael (Paul Bettany) has decided he'd rather save this child, so he shows up to fight off the hoard.

Cheesy, but packed with potential. Yet, for a movie that promises lots of action...there is VERY little action. And that might be okay if the time between action sequences was filmed with anything other than horrific dialogue delivered by disinterested actors. The normally charming and easy Dennis Quaid is supposed to be the owner of the diner, a sad-sack who has long seen his dreams of modest retail success go down the tubes along with his marriage...but he comes across as simple-minded and pitiful. Kate Walsh is on hand to play a wealthy, shrewish mother whose car has broken down...and she fails utterly to generate any consistency in her clichéd role. Charles Dutton is around to play the same character Charles Dutton usually plays...but this time, his dialogue is so tired that there is no Dutton charisma. Tyrese Gibson is actually marginally interesting (he's usually a pretty stone-faced presence)...but that's only in comparison to a pretty low bar. Palicki has a few sparks, but her character is generally so unappealing, that it's hard to root for her.

Worst of all is Paul Bettany. He's often a terrific actor (A BEAUTIFUL MIND, MASTER & COMMANDER)...but here he is saddled with an underwritten part, and he seems determined to wring absolutely nothing out of it. Some actors can take bad scripts and by force of will make them interesting. Bettany does the opposite here. He has about one expression. He has nothing interesting to say. He isn't convincing as a man (or angel) of action.

The trailer to the movie showed a scene with an old woman turning into a crazy, wall climbing monster. The scene, in context, is laughable and actually doesn't make much sense in the plot. And there are other scenes too that seem to mostly involve taking something we generally think of as pleasant and harmless (a nice old woman, an ice cream truck) and making it monstrous. But there's no surprise or suspense built up. I guess just making a nice old woman drop a few f-bombs is supposed to make my blood run cold.

The television show SUPERNATURAL recently had a season that essentially involved angels acting badly. That show, with all its shortcomings of occasionally sketchy acting and low-budget effects, actually made the subject of angels fascinating, interesting and even vaguely logical. If angel-intrigue is something you're interested in, just watch Season 5 of that show.

(Also, the name of the film makes no sense. In the Bible, "Legion" is what a crowd of demons inhabiting a human call themselves. Angels were not involved.)

In the end, LEGION is a movie that had a silly concept that could have been good, clean FUN. Instead, it takes itself far, FAR too seriously...and ends up being a serious bore. There is no reason to subject yourself to this film.

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More Legion (2010 movie) reviews
review by . January 23, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Guns and Bullets Against Demonic Angels?
   Gosh, I just reviewed “The Book Of Eli” last week and here I am about to review a film that portrays a Biblical theme. Movies such as “The Prophecy” have portrayed a very chaotic vision of Heaven and Earth; such a premise is usually very interesting and intriguing, I find movies that attempt to bring the wrath of God into exposition quite enticing. Take note that director Scott Stewart’s apocalyptic action-horror thriller “LEGION” is a not an …
review by . July 01, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Pros: Fully armored angels always look cool, good or bad.     Cons: Pretty much everything.     The Bottom Line: Simply put? I'm not impressed. I don't know when I last gave a movie 1 star, but here you go.     Plot Details: This opinion reveals major details about the movie''s plot. "Hey, Nicole, that Legion movie looks kind of cool.  Should I see it?"    Oh, you mean that apocalyptic-looking movie where the angel …
review by . April 19, 2011
Over the years I have watched more horror films than I can keep track of.  Within my circle of friends I have acquired a reputation for watching just about anything, no matter how good or bad the film may be.  I would even admit to owning some films that have shocked quite a number of people.  I thoroughly enjoy the sexploitation films the feature Pam Grier, I seek out b-rated horror films and sometimes find a charm like The Trilogy of Terror, and I even brave those films that have …
review by . August 09, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
      LEGION      These end of the world flicks are always a hit with me for some reason, especially ones that are more along the lines of horror. I don't know why but I always enjoy them and tend to forgive mishaps more for these. This one while not a perfect movie I s very fun one, especially the first half of the film. Also I am a Tyrese fan so that also helped the film out a lot in my mind, ever since his turn in "Baby Boy" I have been a …
review by . May 28, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
LEGION attracts the viewer because of the cover of the DVD: would Paul Bettany, looking very buff as a cross between evil dark gear under the glow of divine light, betray his fans by making a bad picture? Well, yes. And so is the case for Dennis Quaid, Charles S. Dutton, Tyrese Gibson, etc. perhaps there just aren't many scripts form which to choose that draws actors of this quality into a unintentionally comical dud. But here we are with over two hours of nonsense that may have at its core a good …
review by . January 25, 2010
One line saved this movie from being a complete bore for me: Dennis Quaid: "Besides, I don't even believe in God." Archangel Micahel: "That's fine. He doesn't believe in you either."      Aside from being just a great one-two punch back at modern society's pubescent protests against God, that line pretty much sums up the whole point and plot of the movie: God has threw up his arms and said screw it. Let's get rid of these lil' bastards. The last time he did …
Quick Tip by . July 19, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Loved the Angels and Demon themed going on.. it was an awesome film
Quick Tip by . July 18, 2010
I'm a big fan of apocalyptic films and this one was also a good one. There are not a lot of films like this and thats what made it enjoyable.
review by . January 27, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
God has lost faith in humanity, something that hasn't happened since the days of Noah. But instead of a flood, He has sent down a legion of angels, who possess the bodies of weak-minded people, turning them into ... certainly not demons, but then again, there's nothing angelic about these people, so maybe there's no other way to describe them. Anyway, it seems the only one who has kept the faith is the archangel Michael (Paul Bettany), who directly disobeys God by protecting what he was sent to …
Quick Tip by . May 24, 2010
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I've got my own site, www.afilmcritic.com, on which I'm posting my reviews. I am 46 years old, married 25 years, two kids (23 & 18) and currently work in accounting/finance. I spent 15 years … more
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About this movie


Scott Stewart's supernatural thriller LEGION, scripted by Peter Schink, concerns a group of strangers in an out-of-the-way eatery who become the first line of defense when God, believing the human race is no longer worthy of Him, decides to end their existence. This motley crew's only spiritual ally is the archangel Michael, played by Paul Bettany. Dennis Quaid, Tyrese Gibson, Charles S. Dutton, and Lucas Black co-star in the Screen Gems production.
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Genre: Thriller
Release Date: 2010
MPAA Rating: R
DVD Release Date: May 11, 2010
Runtime: 100 minutes
Studio: Sony Pictures
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