[rate 3]

Ugly, brusque and heartless is the new black, or the new Matrix if we’re talking about Keanu Reeves’ latest role as the anti-hero of the new Warner Brothers comic-turned-movie “Constantine”.

Based on a character seen most recently in a comic series called “Hellblazer”, the movie follows the dark mission of one John Constantine; a human fighting a solitary war against both the forces of Good and Evil, each of which attempt to influence the course of human events with subtle nudges. The script plays fast and loose with Judeo-Christian motifs and fearlessly makes up things when history can’t supply the necessary components.

Angels profane, the Bible has extra verses (only in Hell of course) and our fearless, chain-smoking anti-hero uses a holy-water-bullet spewing cross between a Gatlin gun and a…. well, a cross. I was just waiting for him to pull out the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch.

I can only give this movie one, two, FIVE, no – three, THREE!! blasphemous references out of ten… erm, I mean five (since I’ve rejiggered my rating system).

The concept of PHYSICAL demons and angels stalking amongst humanity isn’t new, and if you read the headlines it’s hard not to believe. There are sequences in this film when we see Hell, and the way that it’s rendered threw my mind immediately to the “Knight of the Word” series by author Terry Brooks that runs parallel to the Constantine theme, but is so much less pretentious and so much more immediate.

If you like the idea of holy-water guns made from crosses see Constantine and do your homework, because you’re still in the 8th grade.

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