V for Vendetta is quite literally one of the very worst films I have ever been subjected to! It has to be in my bottom 10 movies of all time. This is not an idle statement, nor is it a rash decision biased by the fact that I have just been robbed of two hours of my life. I am not the kind of person to give a film 1 out of 10 simply because I do not like it (I gave Crash a 3), but this film should be flattered that I have given it that 1.
Why, you ask? In the documentary Hearts of Darkness (which is about the making of Apocalypse Now, for those who don’t know), Francis Coppola says that, if you try to make a profound film and fail, you end up with the very worst kind of aesthetic crime. Case in point.
The story is fine as a concept, but so badly set out that it’s more like a spoof than a serious socio-political message movie. The characters are all – note ALL – entirely one-dimensional caricatures. The worst of these is V, whose dialogue sounds like it was written by a GCSE drama student (high school drama student to our friends across the pond). The glib references to Shakespeare were an insult to both him and the millions of lovers of his work.
Natalie Portman, who cannot act her way out of a paper bag unless she is given 100% of her character in the script (as she was in Closer and Garden State – the only two movies in which she doesn’t suck) suffers all the more for the fact that her English accent is awful. It’s laughable to think that her character, Evie, is meant to have grown up more or less on the streets, yet she sounds like she’s impersonating a BBC newscaster from the 1950s. Is this the way Americans think all Brits speak?!? Beyond this, the character was dreadfully written, leaving the audience feeling totally ambivalent toward her.
V was a complete waste of time too, as it is impossible to empathise with someone through a mask. Is this supposed to be an allusion to Greek theatre, or is it just an ill conceived visual choice? Did it not occur to anyone that people would switch off after a couple of minutes looking at that stupid grin?
The ‘relationship’ between Evie and V was so insultingly non-existent that they might as well have not even been in the same film. And the dialogue between them?
“Will you dance with me?”
“I remember the man…”
“He was my father, my mother, my brother..” My arse!
PATHETIC!!!! The whole film was so utterly contrived that even its (limited) entertainment value was shat away in an orgy of unnecessary special effects and totally generic action sequences.
And let’s talk about visual cliches; the mask siting in front of the broken mirror, the shot of Portman raising her arms to the sky in the rain, the hundreds of masked civilians gathering in Parliament Square, the pseudo film-noir lighting in the interrogation scenes… Need I go on?
Speaking of the prison sequences, were we really supposed to believe that a) he would have done that to her? b) she would forgive him and still fall for him? c)she’d be more concerned with her hair than with having been tortured and privated? Ludicrous! Is this what passes for character/relationship study in modern cinema?
P*ss poor on every conceivable level, and made infinitely worse by the fact that it takes itself so damn seriously. It fails here most of all, coming off as nothing more than utterly pretentious. Furthermore, this film does nothing but commodify the very serious issues it is supposed to be addressing.
There is not one redeeming thing about this over-produced mess – not one – hence Alan Moore removing his name from it.
I am embarrassed for everyone that likes this film.