RELEASE DATE: 26th February 2016
RATING: 7-9 PG
RUNNING TIME: 97min
STARING: Brenton Thwaites, Courtney Eaton, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Gerard Butler, Paula Arundell, Alia Seror-O’Neill, Emily Wheaton, Elodie Yung, Rachael Blake
DIRECTOR: Alex Proyas
WRITERS: Matt Sazama, Burk Sharpless
PRODUCERS: Basil Iwanyk, Alex Proyas, Topher Dow, Brian Bookman, Michael Paseornek
PRODUCTION BUDGET: $140mil
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: http://www.godsofegypt.movie/home
It’s the Egyptian Power Rangers movie
Ancient Egypt and the Gods live among the people. They are three feet taller than the average man, bleed gold and have incredible powers, but when the King Osiris decides the time has come to hand the crown down to his son, Horus (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), his brother, Set (Gerard Butler), takes the crown, kills the King, and takes Horus’ eyes, the centre of his power. Set takes control of the kingdom and makes everyone slaves, building his monument to his father Ra (Geoffrey Rush). In the middle of this, petty thief Bek (Brenton Thwaites) and his love, Zaya (Courtney Eaton) are trying to make a life for themselves, but unfortunate circumstances results in Zaya’s death. To save her, Bek makes a deal with the disgraced Horus, one of his eyes and helping him destroy Set in return for bringing Zaya back from the dead, but it looks like Horus’ part of the deal is going to be easier.
WHY WATCH IT
I thought this film had promise. I liked the idea of the Gods, and the powers they had. I actually even enjoyed the trailer, but the actual film doesn’t work. The problem is the CGI, which is so much and thick and overdone that it actually ends up ruining the movie.
Firstly, the size difference between the Gods and the people looks so fake that it feels forced. Then there’s the whole transforming thing where the Gods get these coats of armour, which basically makes them look like Egyptian Power Rangers, and not even cool power rangers. Again the suits are so CGI and overdone that they are laughable. Add to this the fact that everything in the film, virtually all the locations and cities, are completely CGI’d, and it adds to the badness. I actually found myself wishing that they’d just made the film animation in the first place, and then I might have enjoyed it more.
The performances are phoned in across the board, even from Thwaites, who I’ve liked in everything else he’s done, even The Signal, and Butler, who can usually be relied on for a solid showing. He doesn’t really get to the emotional crux of Set, but it’s not his fault, the script focuses on action and CGI and fails to develop any of the characters, even when there’s something there. They instead focus on their funky suits and gold blood and miss the point completely.
I really wanted to like this film, but about half way through I just wanted it to be over. If you like CGI films without much substance, and you’re under ten, you might get something out of Gods of Egypt. Just don’t go in with any expectations.
Jon Broeke (@jonbroeke)