Seventh Son: Review This paint by numbers fantasy adventure takes no risks with the narrative, squanders its cast and retains none of the charm from the source material. Master Gregory (Jeff Bridges) is the last of an ancient order sworn to protect the world from evil. When the greatest evil in the land, Mother Malkin (Julianne Moore) escapes her eternal prison he will have to pick up a chosen-one apprentice (Ben Barnes) before the blood moon rises and she conquers the world. What You’ll Like A short runtime. What Might Frustrate You Bridges is a great actor, once upon a time. I don’t know if he fell in love with his Rooster Cogburn from True Grit and the director (Sergey Bodrov) has no control or if he asked Bridges to talk like he was wearing someone else’s face. Either way, it’s distracting the entire time. He manages to frown, slur, country-yokel, mumble and droll out every line. The special effects used to make Bridges face look it is constantly melting off and inability to show his bottom teeth are the most impressive used within the film. The rest of the cast is marginally better. These characters never amount to more than their archetypes. The villains are grandiose, able to turn a simple greeting into a monologue. The youths in love…are in love. They tell you each time they see each other in case you forgot. And the villagers are background characters, incapable of doing anything without Master Gregory’s Jedi-impersonating advice. The story hints at a greater lore, which is explored within the books. A large importance is placed on the apprentice because he is the seventh son. But this doesn’t mean anything to the audience. There are glimpses of political intrigue, character motivations and a back story which could be interesting, but is never explored. Instead of making a movie based upon the book The Spook’s Apprentice, Legendary made a film based off the cliff-notes version. Characters flip flop motivations and reasoning without explanation. In one scene, a character refuses to ever do action X but then after listening to a quick three word speech he’ll decide to do it within the next frame. This change doesn’t mean anything. Consistently there is no payoff to actions and the conflict has no weight behind it. Within creative writing classes, the mantra is “show don’t tell.” Surprisingly, in a visual medium, Seven Son manages to tell its entire plots instead of showing. Final Verdict A disconnect between the story and execution drag this film down. The constantly changing environments and how quickly the cast traverse them make the world feel small instead of large and expansive. Master Gregory’s flippant attitudes towards life have him come across like a court jester instead of a man without hope. Building up an army of villains and then showing them dispatched with ease thanks to a mcguffin and dues ex machina make them look weak, not the hero appear strong. This saying is trite, but never applied more than in this situation: The book was better. Avoid It – Choppy Storytelling – Bridges Speech is like a Stuffed Chipmunk – Rushed CGI – Lore not Explored – Character Relationships Meaningless Level Up, Friends!