*** Official CONSTANTINE Review Thread

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Chuck Mayer, Feb 18, 2005.

  1. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

    Aug 6, 2001
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    Northern Virginia
    Real Name:
    Chuck Mayer
    My first new movie of 2005.

    1) I'm not conversant with the comic, but I am somewhat familiar with the character.

    2) I do like Keanu, though I recognize his limitations.

    3) This is a genre that continually disappoints me.

    Now that personal information is out of the way, here's my review. It's rather tough, because the film deserves some praise, but I never could quite get into it. Instead of walking the fine line between faithfulness to the source material and Hollywood, it seems content to veer a bit into each road and hope it ends up in the middle. I wanted Constantine dark. Real dark. And I did get grim. Moody. But maybe not as dark as I wanted.

    The good: The direction is excellent, especially for a first-timer on a special effects film. Supporting cast does a decent job, and I'd like to give special notice to Tilda Swinton, who elevates almost every scene she is in. The others vary from competent to mediocre. No one is bad.

    The effects are quite good, and somewhat restrained, all things considered. I also loved the sets.

    The both: It's a deep end movie. Things just happen, Constantine does things, with little explanation. I do recognize that's the intent, but sometimes it feels lazy. Keanu, who I do like quite a bit, is sometimes good, and sometimes feels a bit miscast. It not really his fault. The character is inherently more cynical than Reeves could ever hope to convey, but he does a serviceable job - it might have been my preconceptions.

    The bad: It veers too Hollywood a bit often for me. Not distractingly so, but enough for me to notice. Enough for me to wish it was darker [​IMG]

    Back to Tilda, I understand she was playing an androgynous angel, and she's not someone I've cared for in the past...but she looked good here. It might have been the hairdo. Thumbs up. She also gives the best performance.

    To Peter Stormare...this is another preconception issue. I have always viewed his character differently. To be fair, he does a fine job, and it works in the film.

    To Rachel Weisz...I don't buy "tough cop" here. At all. Other than that, she does OK.

    In the end, I liked it, but never really got INTO it. Those that do will surely enjoy it. Those that are fans of the source material, enter at your own risk. There's quite a bit to like here. But little to really sink your teeth into. I'd definitely see a sequel.

  2. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator

    Jun 30, 1999
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    The film needed more cynical humor because there are some good comedic moments, but it missed other opportunities, and given the genre and material, I think it would elevated the material on a human level because of the stakes at hand (mainly the hinted-at past relationships/occupations of Constantine and Midnight, and others before adopting their current roles in the universe). That said, the film could have been tightened up by about 10 minutes.

    But, I wasn't all that bored with the film, but it did lack some oomph that could have made it a better film.

    I give it 2.5 stars, or a grade of C+.
  3. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator

    Dec 9, 1998
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    Real Name:
    This thread is now the Official Review Thread for "Constantine". Please post all HTF member reviews in this thread.

    Any other comments, links to other reviews, or discussion items will be deleted from this thread without warning!

    If you need to discuss those type of issues then I have designated an Official Discussion Thread.

  4. Dave Hackman

    Dave Hackman Stunt Coordinator

    Jan 11, 2000
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    This is a hobby killer. Too many movies like this and it’s time to collect stamps. Keanu Reeves plays John Constantine a sinner destined for hell attempting to make good with his maker by removing as much evil as he can before he dies. Angela Dodson (Rachel Weisz) joins his quest in order to help her twin sister and to save her own behind from the clutches of evil.

    Id like to stick that dragons breath up Keanu’s ass to get him to show a little more passion about his lame chain smoking bitch of a character that he was paid to play. Hey asshole you suck as an actor and you make me sick with your pot-induced coma of a persona that some how gets you gigs.

    Rachel Weisz is quite sexy in her own charming way but doesn’t seem to have enough pizzazz to bring anything interesting to her character and the film suffers for it.

    I stood up walked around awhile came back and didn’t wonder what I missed but wondered why I returned. Bathroom emergencies aren’t a problem because this director planned ahead with tons of boring spots for you to feel comfortable about leaving, what a thoughtful guy.

    This movie is long and unbelievably stupid. Water here water their stupid CGI everywhere. Everyone who contributed to this should be blackballed from further work.

    If you watch this then Exorcist IV: The Beginning then Van Helsing you will have experienced hell just like the characters in the movie.

  5. JamieD

    JamieD Supporting Actor

    Apr 5, 2002
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    I liked it. I'm not going to comment further. Just wanted to mention that it is possible to like this movie and not be brain dead or anything.
  6. Shawn_KE

    Shawn_KE Screenwriter

    Nov 25, 2003
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    I enjoyed it. Wasn't just like the books, but good enough to watch and enjoy.
  7. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

    Oct 31, 1997
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    My background:

    1. Never read the comics and am not familiar with any of the source material.
    2. I don't think Keanu's a very good actor, though I don't hate him.
    3. I like stories involving God and the devil, angels and demons, and their fight for humanity's souls [Memnoch the Devil, I thought, was the best of the Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice].

    That said, I thought Constantine was pretty well done. I enjoyed the performances [Keanu's included] and the story. The CGI was pretty well done too (yes you can still tell it's CGI, but not as egregious as some movie). The direction was fine, and since I came in as close to a "clean slate" as I could, I thought the film was a solid 3.5/5 stars, or a B+ movie grade.

    It is funny in today's age of DVDs (and soon to be HD DVDs) that there were a couple of unexplained things that happened and I said to my girlfriend after the movie "I bet they'll explain so-n-so in the uncut DVD version" and she said "yup." [​IMG]

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