SEVENTH SON | REVIEW

Some of the special effects were okay. <submit review>

Get an email from the Salty Popcorn editor Jason, about half an hour later:

Hey mate, just looked over your review and I don’t think you sent the right file. I seem to have a really early draft or something.

 I reply:

No, that’s the one.

 Jason:

Seven words? You sure mate? There’s nothing in here about the movie at all, just a random observation of some apparently very average effects.

 John:

That’s because that was the only good thing about the film, and I use the term “good” incredibly loosely. Nothing else was worth writing about, not even in a “so bad it’s good” kind of way. It was just bad and mum always said ‘If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.’

 Jason:

What the hell are you talking about? How on Earth did your mother come into this? I can’t publish seven words, our fans will think we’re nuts. Why do you always have to be so crazy? Every time! I don’t care how terrible the movie was, just write the Goddamn review!

 John:

Oh for the love of God, fine:

————-

And so commenced Kernel John’s review of SEVENTH SON – it made me laugh a lot. But he honestly must think I am one mean editor 🙂 He also must have missed my review a couple of years back for………for the life of me I can’t remember the title, but it made me mad – but I did a three word review once a upon a time – got a lot of hits too – the review stated “It was shit.” 🙂 Anyways – check out Kernel John’s review for SEVENTH SON, it is out now from Universal Pictures Australia, it is rated M and runs, apparently for 102 very long minutes. Sad the movie is a piece of shit – I started reading the books years ago, they are written for kids but I really enjoyed this first one in the series. Oh well –  all the best……JK.

 

SEVENTH SON MOVIE POSTER IMAGE
SEVENTH SON | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | MOVIE POSTER IMAGE

 

BY JOHN MC PARLAND

SEVENTH SON is a movie that finished being filmed almost two and a half years ago. However due to company bankruptcy, scheduling conflicts, crew unavailability, production company breakups, distribution rights sales, and multiple release date reschedules, it is only now just being screened. The Universe itself gave multiple hints to everyone involved that this film should not see the light of day, yet stubborn perseverance won through and audience members can now witness for themselves the travesty of a movie that should never have seen the light of day.

Jeff Bridges (THE GIVER) stars as John Gregory, last member of the Falcon Knights, an order of warriors tasked with “tending the creatures of the dark,” aka, “murdering the crap out of anything that looks at you funny.” Known more commonly as a Spook, he sets out to kill the evil Mother Malkin, played by Julianne Moore (STILL ALICE), a shape-shifting witch with a desire to destroy the world. Along the way, Gregory purchases pig farmer Tom Ward, played by Ben Barnes (THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA), from his family as if he is a sack of potatoes or something. Seriously, his folks did not try to argue or even haggle for some more scratch. Random creepy old guy comes to their door wanting to buy their son, tosses a bag of gold onto the table and everyone is all “See ya’ round the maypole Tommy, don’t let the ill fitting, driftwood door hit you in the pantalooned arse on the way out.”

 

SEVENTH SON MOVIE IMAGE
SEVENTH SON | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | TOM WARD (BEN BARNES)

 

Ward it seems is the seventh son of a seventh son, a vital attribute that is never explained, but you know must be important as the film subtly takes its title from this aspect. I felt the need to point this out to you all in case you did not put these two seemingly unrelated facts together yourself. Never fear though, despite the constant reference to the fact that Ward’s family need to seriously invest in some contraception, no one bothers to actually mention why this is so important, as after all, why would audience members care why the movie is called what it is?

Gregory takes Ward as his new apprentice and teaches him how to be an evil smiting master in a week, the time allowed before Malkin reaches her full power and kicks the Earth in the balls with her pointy-toed shoes. From pig farmer to Constantine style bad arse in seven days; totally believable. During their travels, Ward comes across Alice Deane, played by Alicia Vikander (ANNA KARENINA), a half witch spy who falls in love with Ward so rapidly you would swear their romance was pulled straight from the pages of a Disney classic.

This type of storyline has been done to death. There is nothing new or surprising in SEVENTH SON’s plot at all, it is just the same old rehashed tale, this time told poorly and ploddingly. Based on the novel The Spooks Apprentice by Joseph Delaney, director Sergei Bodrov takes this fairly engaging book and uses it to do nothing more than prop up his unbalanced desk, as he clearly drew little inspiration from the core sentiments of the source material.

 

SEVENTH SON MOTHER MALKIN IMAGE
SEVENTH SON | SALTY POPCORN MOVIE REVIEW | MOTHER MALKIN (JULIANNE MOORE)

 

The acting is equally as bland and uninspiring. Barnes is emotionless, Vikander is expressionless, while Bridges puts on the stupidest accent that he never quite gets the hang of. Moore is redeeming, but sparse, spending a good portion of her onscreen time in her dragon form.

To say I was disappointed in this film would be a restraint. I am a big fan of fantasy yet found myself very underwhelmed by this movie’s plot. As a genre, we seem to have moved on from the happy and colourful, rainbows and butterflies aspect of fantasy that Disney made so popular. These days the lines between good and evil have become blurred, where tales are retold from the viewpoints of “villains” such as in MALEFICENT or DRACULA UNTOLD, or where heroes and villains are one and the same depending on your point of view such as in GAME OF THRONES. To do a by-the-numbers fantasy flick you need LORD OF THE RINGS level direction, acting, production, effects and cinematography. Anything less just falls flat in the wake of today’s epics.

Sadly, SEVENTH SON is indeed a pebble amongst the boulders of its more spectacularly presented contemporaries. Poor story, poor acting, and an ending that was such an epically stunning anticlimax, all conspire to relegate this film to the bargain DVD bin.

On the positive side, some of the special effects were okay.

 

1 and a Half Pops

 

 

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