Tag Archives: Eric Bana

From Nothing Comes A King

On Saturday evening I sat down with my better half and son number three to watch the most recent offering from director Guy Ritchie (“Snatch”, “Sherlock Holmes”), “King Arthur : Legend Of The Sword”.

Rob Knighton

Now I must admit that I wasn’t too sure what to expect, as the movie didn’t fare terribly well at the box office and reviews weren’t great either – particularly for football celebrity David Beckham’s brief cameo appearance, but we’ll get to that in time…

Poppy Delevingne & Eric Bana

The film opens with the legendary Camelot under attack from a warlock, Mordred (Rob Knighton – “Anti-Social”, “Riot On Redchurch Street”), who aims to ensure that the mages dominate mankind. He comes up against the King of the Britons, Uther Pendragon (Eric Bana – “Munich”, “Deliver Us From Evil”) who defeats the warlock and his forces.

Jude Law

Unbeknownst to Uther, his brother Vortigern (Jude Law – “Dom Hemingway”, “Sleuth”) wants the throne for himself and has made a pact in which he will sacrifice his wife Elsa (Katie McGrath – “Jurassic World”, “Merlin”) in order to get Uther and his wife Igraine (Poppy Delevingne – “The Boat That Rocked”, “Absolutely Fabulous : The Movie”) out of the way.

Katie McGrath

The sole survivor of Uther’s family is his infant son who is put onto a small boat and drifts off, finally arriving in Londinium (that’s London in today’s lingo) where he is picked up and cared for by a group of prostitutes. Not sure where that would put Camelot, but a fair number of theories over the years have suggested Wales as a location, from where I don’t see a small boat drifting to London somehow…

Charlie Hunnam

We then fast forward through the boy’s childhood as he grows up and learns the way of the streets as well as gaining skills from training with an oriental fighter named George (Tom Wu – “Kick-Ass 2”, “Skyfall”). By adulthood Arthur (Charlie Hunnam – “Sons Of Anarchy”, “Deadfall”) is running a crew of his own.

Jude Law

Meanwhile the waters around now-King Vortigern’s castle have lowered, revealing a sword stuck fast in a stone. The King is forcing all men of around Arthur’s age to attempt to pull the sword from said stone.

Charlie Hunnam, David Beckham & Guy Ritchie

It is when Arthur himself has his turn to try to remove the sword that the aforementioned Beckham has his cameo. Beckham had a smaller cameo in Ritchie’s previous movie “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” which was fine and was a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it kind of thing. This time around Beckham plays Trigger, a Blackleg commander, and has some lines to deliver. Even now, some days later, I can’t decide if the problem – because there is one – is in Beckham’s delivery (he doesn’t have the most commanding voice for the role in question) or is simply, as my wife said, the fact that you’re thinking “oh, there’s David Beckham” and the scene would be fine with a “proper” actor rather than a celebrity?

Kingsley Ben-Adir, Djimon Hounsou, Poppy Delevingne & Annabelle Wallis

Regardless, it is at this point that Arthur becomes aware of his true origins and the destiny which awaits him. It is, however, a destiny which he is stubbornly determined to resist despite everyone around him – his old crew, including Tristan AKA Wet Stick (Kingsley Ben-Adir – “Trespass Against Us”, “Vera”) and Back Lack (Neil Maskell – “Dog House”, “Kill List”) – doing their level best to get him to do so.

Astrid Bergès-Frisbey & Charlie Hunnam

Also involved in this are Uther’s former knight Sir Bedivere (Djimon Hounsou – “Fast & Furious 7”, “The Legend Of Tarzan”), Sir William AKA Goosefat Bill (Aiden Gillen – “Wake Wood”, “The Lovers”), Vortigern’s maid Maggie (Annabelle Wallis – “Come And Find Me”, “Mine”) and a mysterious unnamed mage (Astrid Bergès-Frisbey – “Pirates Of The Caribbean : On Stranger Tides”, “I Origins”).

Camelot Under Siege From Giant Elephants

Apart from the unsuccessful cameo from Beckham, my only real gripe was that a few of the action / fight scenes, particularly towards the end of the film, looked too much like they’d been taken from a video game, such was the level of slow-mo and CGI on display. Oh, and the giant elephants are the beginning?!. That said, the scenes with huge crowds etc. are really well done.

Jude Law, Guy Ritchie & Charlie Hunnam

All that aside we found the movie to be enormously entertaining. Sure it may not be historically accurate – but then how can one be with so many different stories and theories surrounding Arthurian legend – and one might argue that some of Ritchie’s usual approaches (such as the story within a story where as Arthur relays what he predicts is going to happen we see other characters doing exactly that etc.) and the modern language and haircuts don’t fit with the time period in question. However, taken for what it is – a fun and visually impressive retelling of the King Arthur story for today’s audiences (or maybe for those of us who still enjoy revisiting “Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels” and “Snatch” nearly twenty years down the line?) – it’s pretty damn good. Where this all leaves the remaining five films of the originally planned six part series is anyone’s guess. In the meantime, however, this is a well-recommended two hours of cinematic entertainment…

You Haven’t Seen True Evil

Today I watched a very interesting movie, which had the tagline “inspired by the actual accounts of NYPD Sergeant Ralph Sarchie”. Now statements like that attached to movies could mean there was just inspiration or it was based on actual events.

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Ralph Sarchie & Lisa Collier Cool - Beware The Night
Ralph Sarchie & Lisa Collier Cool – Beware The Night

I haven’t read the source book in this case, 2001’s “Beware The Night” (co-written by Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool), but imagine it’s more a case of the former than the latter. Having initially become involved in demonology cases whilst a serving NYPD officer, where he had worked for nearly twenty years, Sarchie in 2004, since when he has been working exclusively on supernatural cases

The movie in question, “Deliver Us From Evil”, released in 2014, is an American made supernatural horror film, directed by Scott Derrickson (“The Exorcism Of Emily Rose”, “Sinister”).

The film opens with in Iraq in 2010 where, after a firefight in a palm grove, three U.S. soldiers discover and enter an underground cave. Their helmet camera feed goes black as someone starts to scream.

Eric Bana & Joel McHale
Eric Bana & Joel McHale

We then switch to the Bronx, New York, three years later where Sergeant Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana – “Deadfall”, “Hanna”) is working with his partner Butler (Joel McHale – “Adult Beginners”). They decide to take over a call for a different unit, to a domestic disturbance involving a former Marine, Jimmy (Chris Coy – “Hostel Part III”) because Sarchie’s “radar” is going off.

Olivia Munn Eric Bana
Olivia Munn & Eric Bana

Sarchie has a wife, Jen (Olivia Munn – “Mortdecai”, “Magic Mike”) and young daughter, Christina, who he has been neglecting through the pressures of his work.

Olivia Horton
Olivia Horton

Soon after the domestic disturbance call Sarchie crosses paths with a seemingly deranged mother, Jane Crenna (Olivia Horton – “The Enemy Within”) who has thrown her toddler into a moat surrounding the lion enclosure at the Bronx zoo, and who is bizarrely reciting the words to “Break On Through (To The Other Side)” by The Doors as she scrabble at the ground with her fingertips.

Édgar Ramírez
Édgar Ramírez

Following this, Sarchie comes into contact with Crenna’s Jesuit priest Mendoza (Édgar Ramírez – “Domino”, “Vantage Point”), who suggests that there is more going on than simply human evil.

Sean Harris
Sean Harris

Further events occur, introducing two more former Marines, David Griggs (Scott Johnsen – “The Drop”) and Santino (Sean Harris – “’71”, “A Lonely Place To Die”) who have been working as painters.

As Sarchie investigates with Mendoza’s help, he uncovers hidden writings that appear to be a mixture of Christian and Pagan theology.

I thought this was a really well plotted story, with plenty of things thrown into the mix to add to the experience – including strange sounds and hallucinations that only Sarchie experiences, a guilty secret, Latin, surreal references to The Doors songs, and a vaguely sinister stuffed owl.

Both Bana and Ramírez portray their respective characters really well, and I felt that Harris was outstanding as the malevolent Santino. He didn’t have a lot to work with, certainly not in the dialogue stakes, but was extremely convincing.

So, regardless of how much – or as is likely, how little – of the true life source book was included in the script for this film, it is a genuinely dark and gripping story and makes for an excellent two hours viewing…

deliver-us-from-evil