Plot: A post-apocalyptic tale, in which a lone man fights his way across America in order to protect a sacred book that holds the secrets to saving humankind.
Spoiler alert if you haven’t seen the film so do not read on if you don’t want to know any twists.
I can’t believe Book of Eli is 10 years old today; it only feels like it came out a couple of years ago; admittedly it’s not a movie I watch all that often as it is rather grim however, its biggest selling point has always been the incredible music score by Atticus Ross.
The opening track entitled Panorama is haunting and it’s what grabbed me immediately with the film. I always thought even from the trailers it was rather obvious what the book was so that wasn’t a massive shock but there are several other twists to the story which keep you guessing.
Denzel Washington gives one of his most underappreciated performances and is a total badass but still manages to be vulnerable and sympathetic as Eli.
Book of Eli also has Gary Oldman on villain duties with a great supporting cast that includes Mila Kunis, Tom Waits, Ray Stevenson and an early role for Lateef Crowder.
I love my post-apocalyptic movies and the visual style of this movie is one of the best in recent years as it feels authentic with a sense of threat around every corner. There are rapists, killers and more in the wastelands that used to be America but what’s so interesting about the movie is that it’s really about faith and Eli may be blind but he can see through faith which is a powerful message.
There is plenty of action with Denzel taking out any enemies in his path and there is as you can imagine no shortage of violence; I find it a very immersive tale and it feels like a nightmarish but potentially believable reality that I hope doesn’t come true in my lifetime.
Overall, after 10 years The Book of Eli is rather grim but also uplifting with excellent performances and one of my favourite music scores of recent times. It’s hardly a barrel of laughs but there are well executed action scenes and it moves at a good pace with several twists you may not see coming.