GODS OF EGYPT

PrintE-mail Written by Ryan Pollard

Gods of Egypt is quite possibly one of the most impossible films to have been made in modern times, but impossible in the sense that it shouldn't even exist at all. It is one of the worst films of 2016, and while it is entertaining, the entertainment factor is completely unintentional and you would struggle to keep your eyes away from the screen. By being loud, boisterous, and bombastic in its sense of adventure, the film insists that it's good, but it never lets up once. It's as laughably bad as Joel Schumacher's version of Batman, but is also very reminiscent of Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, with these all-so powerful gods being so pathetic, they don't possess any power whatsoever, unless they transform into this horrendous Iron Man/Transformers-like Animality (except for Geoffrey Rush, who for some reason just grows in size).

Everything in the film fails across the board, from the casting, the direction, the writing, the VFX work, the cinematography, the action sequences and so on. While it is true that the whole controversy of whitewashing the cast, instead of casting Middle-Eastern actors, sticks out like a sore thumb, the whole movie is woefully miscast. With the exception of Daredevil's Elodie Yung (who actually kind of gets away with it), there is not one great singular piece of casting in the whole film, and unsurprisingly, everyone speaks with a British accent (again with the exception for Geoffrey Rush, who almost sounds Scottish). You don't really have any attachment to any of these characters, the generic human couple in the thief Bek (Brenton Thwaites) and his girlfriend (Courtney Eaton) are never relatable, and you never really give a hoot about whether she's dying and if he can save her life.

There is so much awkward humour in the film, you never find yourself laughing, but when the movie tries to be serious, dramatic or clever, you would find yourself in stitches. The direction falls flat, with no clear sense of pace or fluidity in its execution, resulting in what is a total mess of a film. The CGI looks so artificially synthetic; it makes the graphics of next-gen console video games look superior by comparison. In fact, it's even worse than the Star Wars prequel trilogy in terms of how the CGI is utilised. The action scenes are so incredibly gargantuan and over-bloated, that it is evident that every fight took place within a giant green-screen soundstage. Oh, and why does every single fight scene have to have a 360° spinning-cam?! 

The film's veracity and total commitment is so amazing, it's completely baffling, and everyone involved must've known how bad this was going to turn out. The only exception to that being director Alex Proyas (the man who gave us The Crow, Dark City and I, Robot), who is so in love with his own catastrophe, that he had the gall to call out on reviewers, who are just as baffled and confused by the film's existence, call them "deranged idiots" and criticise them for not understanding the film. This film pulls from great Egyptian lore and mythology, and even the experts on this topic would've been horrified by how this is represented in mainstream culture. Even the Earth is shown to be flat instead of spherical in this film!

Gods of Egypt is this decade's Batman & Robin or Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, being loud, colourful, gaudy and obnoxious in every possible sense. Honestly, it makes 300: Rise of an Empire look like cinematic art in comparison. It's so long it overstays its welcome and it fails on every possible level, but at least it can make you laugh at how bad it is sometimes, although whether that's good for anyone's health or not remains to be seen.

GODS OF EGYPT / CERT: 12A / DIRECTOR: ALEX PROYAS / SCREENPLAY: MATT SAZAMA, BURK SHARPLESS / STARRING: BRENTON THWAITES, NIKOLAJ COSTER-WALDAU, CHADWICK BOSEMAN, GERARD BUTLER, ELODIE YUNG, GEOFFREY RUSH, COURTNEY EATON / RELEASE DATE: 17TH JUNE




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