Here’s the thing to know whenever you go to a movie that is released in January…don’t expect too much. January & February are the wasteland of movieland. If your movie gets put out there in that time period, it ain’t that good. Apparently, distributor “Screen Gems” knew this and dropped this film off this past weekend without screening it for critics and with little or no prerelease hype. So as you can imagine, despite a cool looking trailer and a bunch of actors who are ALL qualified, this movie is a bit of a stinker. But not so much in that I couldn’t sit through the whole thing. Which, after sitting through “The Book Of Eli”, is a good thing, I suppose.
In a nutshell, the angel Michael defies God and instead of finding & destroying a little unborn baby on Earth to start the apocalypse (yet ANOTHER one of THOSE movies?), he decides he’s gonna rescue the baby instead. And the baby is in the body of an 8-month pregnant beauty (Adrienne Palicki) somewhere in the Arizona desert working for Dennis Quaid in a rundown shack of a restaurant. Okay…so there’s the setup. From there you add the redheaded doctor from “The Practice” (Kate Walsh), a serious Tyrese Gibson and the guy from Fast & The Furious: Tokyo Drift (Lucas Black), and you got yourself a movie! But not a very good one. The angel Michael is played well enough by very serious Paul Bettany from “The Da Vinci Code”. He spouts off words of wisdom and organizes the group to defend themselves against the masses of humans who have been taken over by angels who are zombies and swarms of bugs and crazy grannies who want to eat people’s faces and all kinds of stuff. It’s all very preachy and there are lots of messages lost in the shuffle (abortion rights, Bible thumpers anonymous, parenthood, etc) and sometimes it is slow when it should be running at full throttle, but I didn’t hate this movie. As a matter of fact, it kind of brightened my day on a crappy Monday and, although I’ll never watch it again unless it’s on HBO or something, I won’t complete shred it.
Overall, I thought the acting was fine. The effects were fine. The script was average. And the directing was not as good as it should have been. This movie could have stood to be maybe 45 minutes longer in order to develop the characters a little better and to allow the audience to identify with Michael and the heroes of the movie. But I guess developing the characters wasn’t in the plan. Instead, “Bold Films” (which produced the movie) seemed to be happy with releasing an average product to get me through a blustery January day. And on that note…they did their job.
Overall Rating: C-