Well, goodness. What a ride that was. Almost too much of one - I could have done with a little less blowing things up and a little more attention given to the characters. No, I don't mean establishing who they are and why they're there - I mean a little *more* attention. I *liked* the characters.
I'd like to state that this is the first film I've ever liked Sean Connery in. I think he was perfect, absolutely perfect, for this role, for all the reasons I always hated him as Bond. He is rough and clever, weary and angry, fierce and damning. I loved him. Which surprised me.
What also surprised me is that Tom Sawyer, the token American who saves the day, didn't annoy me at all, but rather endeared himself to me gradually and subtly as the film ran its course. Also, he was cute. Unlike the usual token Americans who save the day.
Skinner, well. Well, well, well. Almost custom-built to have me melting in my seat, really - and goodness, Tony Curran played him well - we just didn't, erm, see enough of him. I tried to think of another way to put that, really I did. The Jekyll/Hyde business was pretty well done as well...I didn't believe it all the time, but believing it even some of the time was pretty good. Nemo was incredibly dull, but, well, credibly so. :)
Lest you think I approved of everyone, Mina "Gother Than Thou, Damn It" Harker annoyed the hell out of me and I would have been quite happy to wrap that overlong scarf around her silly little neck until she could no longer breathe enough to voice her oh-so-mysterious anguish. However, I do objectively think she was well acted, and her scenes with Dorian Gray were brilliant, full of tension in exactly the way I'd expect from people of their time. Beautiful.
I mean it's not, actually, as if I had a hope. It's *Stuart Townsend*, for god's sake, the man who managed to make the world forget that Lestat was meant to be blonde and from Paris, he of the cheekbones and the dark brown eyes. Also, it's Dorian Gray. I mean, Dorian Gray.
But. He's also indestructible. They shoot him full of bullets and then rip his shirt off and you see the wounds heal. He has a sword-cane - he has a sword-cane. He deliberately cuts Mina and has a line so impossibly sexy following it that I can't remember what it was. (Really, although Denny helpfully points out it was just "We wouldn't want blood everywhere, would we?" so I think it must have been mostly the way he said it. Still. Mmm, blood.)
He's. Fucking. Gorgeous.
In between, there was a film, and some other characters. There was some very silly "I'm a villain, no, I'm not, yes I am, can't catch me" business a few times over, and a lot - a lot - of blowing things up, some totally ludicrous distortions of the space-time continuum (but I suppose it is only a movie) and some moments of character stupidity that could really have been avoided if they'd spent longer thinking about the characters. The ending forced our mouths open and rammed "SEQUEL" down our throats. I wasn't entirely complaining.
Enough, then. I adore the characters and ridicule the plot. I can't help wishing it had been directed by someone like Tim Burton. When I have all the money in the world, I'll certainly buy a copy, but I'm not sure I'd go and see it again.
I'll be looking out for Stuart Townsend in the future, though. Even if he was only playing himself, he was *very* good at it.
Feel free to disagree. ~smile~