I was actually really looking forward to this film, but boy was I disappointed.
The film starts 100 years ago and is about a one Peter Lake (Colin Farrell) who’s basically a thief and has a falling out with his former boss- and demon- Pearly Soames (Russell Crowe). He is then rescued by a white horse that miraculously jumps over Pearly and all of his men to take Peter to safety. He then ends up at a house whose most of its residents have left for holiday and decides to rob their house. Except he finds that the house is not entirely empty. Then he meets Beverly Penn (played by the beautiful Jessica Brown Findlay) who is terminally ill with Consumption and instantly falls in love with her. In this world, people have ‘miracles’ to perform- a purpose to their life. So when Pearly finds out about Beverly, he believes Peter’s miracle is to save her from Consumption. Of course that doesn’t sit well with him so he seeks to kill her- by pulling a favor from an angel- so Peter wouldn’t fulfill his destiny. Pearly succeeds and then tracks down Peter, head-butts him off a bridge and into the river.
Peter miraculously survives the plunge but has no recollection of who he is and what his past is. But to top it off, he roams the streets of New York city for 100 years until he meets a little girl…
then the story goes downhill from there. The ‘big confrontation’ for Peter Lake is so unexciting you don’t even know it’s happening. Peter fulfilling his true destiny also felt like a non-event. It’s rather unfortunate because all the actors played their parts really well. Also, when you have Jennifer Connelly (who plays Virginia Gamely, the little girl’s mother) and Will Smith (who plays Lucifer) in a movie, you use them; give them more depth. They have like a total of 10 minutes screen time.
I found the overall concept of the plot quite interesting though- good vs evil, angels and demons, destiny, hope vs destruction- but I think it could’ve been developed a bit more throughout the film than just subtle hints here and there.
The trailer made me believe it would be Stardust meets Kate & Leopold (without Meg Ryan), so up until Peter falls into the river, I was hoping that when he falls he would arrive to present day, and with the help of Virginia, finds a way to save Beverly. Peter would then go back and confront Pearly and Lucifer in a grand battle, and he overcomes and gets the love his life back and they live happily ever after. Ah well.
Rating: I give it 3 Oi’s out of 5.