By now, you know the drill. The world has met a sudden and untimely end, leaving bands of humans scattered throughout various wastelands. Also, for some reason or another, there are biker gangs that have grown an affinity for shooting random survivors and eating people. Somehow, in a world in where water is scarce, fuel is aplenty.
All of that said, where films such as The Road and Mad Max were the swan songs of the post-apocalyptic genre, the Hughes Brothers’ The Book of Eli is anything but. That’s not to say the movie is terrible, because it isn’t, and has a few entertaining scenes, but it doesn’t give us anything new. By now we are becoming used to the idea of cannibals running around and random bad guys thrown into the mix. Denzel Washington acts well, and in that I mean, he acts like he generally does, as a no-nonsense-badass. Mila Kunis plays the typical girl-in-distress who needs desperate saving. Unfortunately, she does not look like she belongs in the movie. Why? Because she’s too pretty, that’s why. Despite the fact that beauty products no longer reside in the world, Kunis continually looks as though she just emerged from a salon.
The movie, while lacking in a substantial plot and much originality, is shot in some wonderful ways. The bleak coloration, and the general way in which landscapes are presented, are quite astounding. There is the moment in where Washington takes on a group of thugs with nothing more than a machete under a bridge, and all we see are their silhouettes in action; a beautiful image onto itself. What the Hughes Brothers lack in terms of plot, they make up for with their visual displays.