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Review: Gods of Egypt

GODS OF EGYPT

Gods of Egypt | Directed by Alex Proyas | ★ 

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Australian director Alex Proyas’ latest marks the filmmakers second foray into the blockbuster epic since the well-recieved ‘I, Robot’. Unfortunately, ‘Gods Of Egypt’ has none of the charm of the Will Smith smash, nor the intrigue of his cult hits ‘Dark City’ and ‘The Crow’ leaving much to be desired.

The film opens on a beautiful CGI scene, a decadent Egyptian arena laden with gold and jewels packed with thousands of people waiting for the inauguration of their new leader – Horus (Game of Thrones’ Nicolaj Coster-Waldau). The illusory glamour of the scene is immediately dispelled when Horus is betrayed by his uncle Set (Gerard Butler), and the two transform from their humanoid forms into disappointing digital creatures supposed to represent the readily recognised animal-faced forms of the Egyptian gods.

Representing humanity in this tale is Bek, played by Aussie expatriate Brenton Thwaites. His adorable grin wasn’t enough to save his clumsy dialogue as he goofed his way across deserts, battling gods and monsters alongside his begrudging ally Horus. Bek’s modus operandi is to save his recently slain lover from Anubis’ death march to the underworld, blackmailing Horus into his service with the promise of helping him retrieve his recently stolen eye.

The film was widely disparaged before its release for it’s white-washed casting in its telling of ancient Egyptian lore, and these complaints were not misplaced. Further still, the male leads portrayed by an Australian, a Scotsman and a Dane speaking in inexplicable English accents they could hardly maintain totally destroyed any suspension of disbelief the film had left to hide behind.

Overall, a thoroughly disappointing film. I can forgive a film for lazy, unintelligent dialogue if it’s going to give me 90 odd minutes of quality action and impressive effects, but Gods did not deliver. ‘Gods of Egypt’ is the zenith of Hollywood white-washing, paying talented actors far too much money for lackadaisical performances they’d probably regret if it weren’t for that cheque.

Leigh Hill

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