4 out of 10
Release Date: 29th May 2015
Director: Jim Weedon
Cast: Stanley Weber, Annabelle Wallis, Karel Roden, Ed Skrein, Edward Akrout, Gianni Giardinelli and Dave Legeno
Writer: Jim Weedon
Trailer: SWORD OF VENGEANCE
Like a super-strength poe-faced cross between the already poe-faced 300, Valhalla Rising and Robin Hood-Prince of of Thieves, Sword of Vengeance wears it’s black and white, slow motion scenes of death and carnage on it’s sporen. It’s not a great film but for those that place no demands on their entertainment except predictability and the minimum of dialogue this delivers all of this but little else. A fare amount of money has been spent on making this British filmed skirmish in a meadow look the business. It has the look of a Frank Miller graphic novel / film and pulls this style hijack without a hitch compared to Jonathan Sothcott & Simon Phillips attempt pinch Sin City’s look for their shite Jack Says trilogy. There’s actually not an awful lot worng with Sword of Vengeance (technically). It’s just that it’s so ordinary and unwilling to try any new ideas of it’s own. Sword of Vengeance just seems to be a ‘safe’ bet and calling card for a director that wants to work on Game of Thrones. It’s certainly a place-holder before the next big budget sword and sandal epic turns up.
The plot mirrors Robin Hood – Prince of Thieves in every way but ups the gore and violence quota dramatically. Shadowman (STANLEY WEBER – NOT ANOTHER HAPPY ENDING) turns up on the Earl of Durant’s (KAREL RODEN – HELLBOY) patch to wreak vengeance on him and his family for the death of his family. He falls in with a bunch of hostile saxons led by Annabelle (ANNABELLE WALLIS – ANNABELLE) who is the kind of female warrior you always find in this movie. She is fair, clean, blonde, good teeth and glutes, yet there is no one else in the tribe who seems to have more than one tooth, or less than three eyes. We just know there’ll be a slow motion sex scene set to Sadness by Engima in here sooner or later (I was right – minus the choice of soundtrack). The merry saxons, who also includes future Transporter lead Ed Skrein (ILL MANORS) and the late, great Dave Legeno (LAST KNIGHTS) – to whom this film is dedicated, wait for the Normans to attack and for Shadowman to deliver a most pointy reckoning to the Earl and his family. And that’s it.
The action is well choreographed and the scenes of fighting well-staged, it’s just a shame that there’s not a grain of originality or fun to be had for anybody. You could play cliche bingo quote easily but you’d have to be pretty sad to play that game in the first place, and also to have chosen this particular non-entity. Once this has disappeared from the cinemas and DVD shelves of Asda it’s doomed to be forgotten by everybody. What a sad situation for this to be Dave Legeno’s last film on release. RIP.
4 out of 10 – Competent and trustworthy to a fault. It’s made well but you can say the same things about Volvos.
WHAT HAVE I SEEN THAT ACTOR IN BEFORE?
- Stanley Weber: Pilgrimage, Not Another Happy Ending, Trap For Cinderella, Borgia (TV), Therese, Lily Sometimes
- Annabelle Wallis: Knights of the Roundtable – King Arthur (2015), Grimsby, Mine, Hello Carter, Peaky Blinders (TV), Annabelle, The Tudors (TV)
- Karel Roden: Angel (2015), Frankenstein’s Army, A Lonely Place To Die, Largo Winch: Deadly Vengeance, Rock-n-Rolla, The Bourne Supremacy, Mr Bean’s Holiday, Blade II, Hellboy, 15 Minutes
- Ed Skrein: Deadpool, The Model (2015), Kill Your Friends, Transporter 4, Tiger House, Northmen, The Sweeney, Piggy, Ill Manors
- Edward Akrout: Bitter Harvest (2015), Deadly Virtues
- Dave Legeno: Last Knights, The Incident, Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows- part 1 & 2, Bonded By Blood, Centurion, Dead Cert, The Cottage, Harry Potter & The Half Blood Prince, Hell To Pay, Snatch