Published Feb 06, 2015When it comes to fantasy epics, most English-speaking films tend to favour British accents over its North American counterparts. However, within the first few minutes of Seventh Son — Sergei Bodrov's long-in-production action adventure loosely based on Joseph Delaney's 2004 YA novel The Spook's Apprentice — it becomes crystal clear that the majority of the film's stars (Kit Harington, Olivia Williams and lead Ben Barnes among them) are forcing some sort of commonplace, non-state-specific American accent. While that may seem like a trivial thing to take issue with, it hints at a greater problem found throughout the film.
Seventh Son is the cinematic equivalent of vanilla-flavoured almond milk: it sounds like it could be okay, and it may seem kind of good for you (at least as far as nourishing young, healthy minds is concerned), but overall it doesn't compare to the real thing and ultimately leaves a bad taste in your mouth.
This is a shell of a fantasy film, with anything close to resembling actual fun having been stripped away early on in favour of an inoffensive script (truly, you'll never find magic so boring), out-dated computer graphics (the company that created them went bankrupt during production) and a convoluted storyline that is somehow more confusing because of how simple it is (Ben Barnes' lead character, Tom Ward, is supposedly a "seventh son of a seventh son" — why that's relevant, we'll never know). Throw in some poor choices of scenery (Canadians fans, prepare to be transported to the far-off countryside of coastal British Columbia) and a group of evil villains seemingly modeled after the ones found in the 1994 classic fighting game Shaq Fu, and you have a movie that is ultimately memorable for all the wrong reasons.
Quick piece of trivia: This is the first film Julianne Moore and Jeff Bridges have appeared in together since The Big Lebowski, but don't worry if you didn't know that — it's almost like they're not even in the movie! Bridges is now 0-for-2 when it comes to YA silver screen adaptations (his first misstep being The Giver), spending the majority of this film parading around like Colonel Sanders was recruited by the Knights of the Round Table; the only thing scary about Moore's performance as the evil witch queen Mother Malkin is how sad she looks while doing it (don't worry — watching Still Alice will help you forget all about that).
Sadly, the best part of Seventh Son has nothing to do with the actual movie, but the minor boost it probably gave the Canadian economy when it began production in 2012. That's right — this movie was originally filmed the same year Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know" first appeared on the radio, but had its release delayed for three years, partly because of financial and distribution issues, but also probably because it sucked.
Schoolhouse Rock! once said, "Knowledge is power." Now, knowing how bad this movie is, never, ever see it.