Produced by game company Ubisoft, the Assassin’s Creed film stays true to the storyline from the popular game series but with a character of its own rather than pulling right from the game. Ultimately it’s a version of the same thing but with new characters that parallel the originals. And because the film is true to the game, I would guess that’s why it didn’t do well theatrically, it’s a fan film. And for me, since I am a fan of the franchise, I thought it was great…
The story follows Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender) as he dives into the memories of his assassin ancestor Aquilar de Nerha. The reason he’s exploring his past is to search for the Apple of Eden, a powerful relic being sought for by the secret Templars who are manipulating Lynch into helping them. Lynch eventually discovers that he’s on the wrong side of history but at a time that comes a bit too late.
The film is well written but can be challenging to follow if you’re unfamiliar with the game, when you’ve played, you’re used to the back and forth of the story between the 2 characters. The movie follows the same pattern which results in a clever, innovative way to tell the story. The action is great and borrows from the legend of the deadliness and agility of the characters. One the more compelling elements has always been the Leap of Faith and luckily it’s well celebrated; you’ll know it when you see it.
Fassbender in dual roles as Lynch/de Nerha is superb. The guy can play anything, he brings a strong performance to both the emotional side and the physical side necessary for stretching across these characters from different timelines. He pulls this off simultaneously at times. Marion Cotillard as Sofia and Jeremy Irons as her father Rikkin plays higher-ups in the Templar society pulling the strings and bring their A-games as usual. Among the rest of the talented cast: Michael Kenneth Williams, Brendan Gleeson, and Essie Davis.
If you’re a fan of the game you’ll probably dig this one. If not, if you enjoy movies that can be a little challenging to watch, it’s worth a viewing.
reviewed by Sean McKnight