Sound Off: Hughes Brothers' The Book of Eli - Your Thoughts?
by Alex Billington
January 15, 2010
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? Albert and Allen Hughes, more popularly known as the Hughes Brothers, haven't made a movie since From Hell in 2001. But now they're back again, some nine years later, with a gritty post-apocalyptic action movie called The Book of Eli. But how is the movie? Is it as awesome as all the trailers make it out to be? How is Denzel Washington as the lead and Mila Kunis, too? Is the story any good or is it just bland and boring? How does it compare to The Road? What did you think? If you've seen it, sound off, leave a comment below, and let us know what you thought of The Book of Eli!
To fuel the fire, I loved it, it was so frickin' awesome. I'm a sucker for this kind of over-stylized action movie and it delivered everything I wanted it to and so much more. It kind of reminds me of Children of Men with a little bit of The Road and Road Warrior thrown in for good measure. And considering I also love those three movies, it's obvious that I would love this one, too. The story is the best part and I don't want to say too much, but I loved how it kept building to that big reveal, and the implications once you find out what's really going on were awesome. I love almost everything about The Book of Eli and can't suggest it enough!
What did you think of The Book of Eli? Great post-apocalyptic action or bland and boring?
Reader Feedback - 102 Comments
It was biblical in its action and stayed true to its form as a deep action-thriller. Denzel is just mesmerising and his rival Gary Oldman....is forever the best british actor playing villains equal to the hero. Mila kunis is growing as an actor and is very easy on the eyes (she's no longer Kelso's bitchy girlfriend in my eyes). Simply, this movie is what I needed as a good yarn of an action flick... Nuff said!
Lazarus from Sparta!!! on Jan 15, 2010
YEAH ALEX YEAH, dont listen to the haters "to fuel the fire" is back, ha.
Cody on Jan 15, 2010
I absolutely loved this film. You can look at it in many different angles and for me being a christian it was inspiring, and deep. Thank you!!!!!
teasha b on Jan 15, 2010
The only thing that would have messed this movie would have been MARK WAHLBERG in it! Fuck that guy!
Ray on Jan 15, 2010
I thought the film had the look of the road and the bad ass action of The Road Warrior. I enjoyed it and I felt the key action when Denzel was at the house with the old couple was brilliantly shot. I am happy the Hughes Brothers are back and they did a terrific job along with the Cinematographer. Enjoyable flick and Denzel was bad ass in it!
dee on Jan 15, 2010
I liked it. A good (not great) movie to start off the new year.
graffiti bandit on Jan 15, 2010
religious bull$h*t. not worth the money.
yo dogma on Jan 15, 2010
Bad to the bone.
Nick on Jan 15, 2010
as a lifelong Atheist I loved this movie. He was a vehicle for the spiritual, christianity was just the tool to deliver that message to an american audience. oh and I loved the old couple in the house. 8 out of 10 stars
KittyKhem on Jan 15, 2010
I loved it. The score and cinematography were outstanding. I recommend it highly
Dan W on Jan 15, 2010
To write off this incredible movie because of it's blatant spiritual message is to be purely biased and closed-minded. This is just another perfect example that Christian-based movies can be just as awesome if done right! As a young Christian, I have nothing but praise for The Book of Eli. The Hughes Brothers have really stepped up their filmmaking game! Job well done!
Icefilm on Jan 16, 2010
agreed with #11 icefilm. As a film itself, it was very well done. It had awesome action scenes, thrill, humor, well thought out script, great story, outstanding performances by Denzel and Gary, great directing, and on top of that a powerful spiritual message. You cannot bash this movie solely because you are biased against religion. ehem *cough* yo dogma This movie was amazing, big props to the makers that follow the message of the film, follow the voice of God blindly, and keep the faith
TIMO on Jan 16, 2010
The Book of Eli started out strong. Solid cinematography, subtle storytelling and just the right amount of action. Then it turns into an outrageous caricature of itself. It loses itself in gratuitous violence, ridiculous dialogue, and then beats you over the head with an unnecessary twist so the fanboys have something to talk about. Denzel Washington is Denzel Washington, you can take that however you like. Mila Kunis is completely unnecessary and also the catalyst to the film's 180 into the toilet. Gary Oldman is phenomenal as always, but his fate is just as ridiculous as the latter half of the film. Also, what's with the green screen rowboat? I could have done that scene better in my basement with a Handicam and Adobe Premier. By the end of the film, they obviously were so enthusiastic about making the movie as ridiculous as possible that they threw in a celebrity cameo and put some really fake hair on him. Was it supposed to be funny? I don't know. It was really just sad. So, while the film started off strong, they decided to replace any real concepts they had with a gatling gun; most likely to dazzle their high school audience.
Dear Filmmaker on Jan 16, 2010
Close, but no cigar. The movie certainly starts strong, but reaches the edge of absurdity by its end. There are huge holes in the design of a post-apocalytic world; unbELIvable characters such as Mila Kunis'; poorly written characters such as Ray Stevenson's; and an absurd desire by Oldman's character for The Book. The major plot line - how The Bible could survive the apocalypse - is definitely an interesting story line and worth writing and telling. Unfortunatily, this was not a solid effort. To the plus side, Denzel's character kicks butt, and has some great decapitation moves.
Whisk E. Clear on Jan 16, 2010
Easily worth my money. I was entertained all the way trough. Long Shot: I love long shots, and Eli has a fantastic one. It probably lasts over 2 minutes. Reminiscent of Children of Men... great stuff.
Knawx on Jan 16, 2010
I loved it! We thought it seemed similar to The Road Warrior as well but overall with much better action scenes. I agree with the poster that having a Christian message shouldn't make it a bad film. It was a great film regardless of that.
PGM on Jan 16, 2010
This movie was absolutely incredible! I loved it.
Brian Ricci on Jan 16, 2010
I need one question answered. Was Eli blind? If so, I need to go back to see it again. How could he manuever through the world like he did blindly?
rduck on Jan 16, 2010
#18 Yeah. That's why the book was in brail. That's why they zoomed in on his eyes at the end. And there's 2 answers I guess. The first is that after walking 30 years he just got good at it. And the second (and I'm not religious at all) is that he was sort of guided by faith or some sort of divine force? maybe. I don't know. I'd rather stick with the first one. Check out Blind Fury with Rutger Hauer. That's a bad ass movie where he plays a blind swordsman. or Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman
Brian Ricci on Jan 16, 2010
Book of Eli is awsome with a great message. I never took Mila Kunis as a serious actress until now. Good casting all around. Can't go wrong w/ Denzel. Must watch!!!
xocho on Jan 16, 2010
Movie was pretty decent IMO.
Jake the snake on Jan 16, 2010
I enjoyed this movie.. It was more than I expected it to be. A great way to start off the new year. I have been recommending this movie to everyone I know. This is a movie that anyone can enjoy and depending on who you are... You will take something different away from this movie, it's message and it's imagery... I thought that the movie provoked thought and serious reflection... Definately will see it again and buy it when it is released for sale... The Christian theme and scriptural references made it even better for me as a Christian. As a protector and defender of the Gospels, I think Denzel's part was outstanding!!!
Arch Angel on Jan 16, 2010
This was a review I wrote on my blog. Hopefully if anyone wants to talk about the film we can be civil about it.... Post-apocalyptic movies must be challenging to make. You have to say something special about humanity that could only be said in an "end-of-the-world" setting and not just make it a statement about humanity in general. After all, films set in modern times can work that way just as well. A variety of topics and styles have been shown in this genre. From George Miller's Mad Max to the recent mediocre adaptation of The Road, style is a key component. Sadly, The Book of Eli falls into the category of being too stylistic with little substance. Shot like a music video, the landscape of The Book of Eli is seen as a bleak gray populated by souls either too young (to remember what life was like before the great war that caused the end-of-times) or old souls that try to stick to the way things used to be. Grey haired people and grey environments... whether the symbolism is blatant or unconscious it just stays as an observation I made and it has no bearing on the lack of emotion present in the movie (which in my opinion is when symbolism works the best, and this movie is full of symbolic dialogue and imagery that falls flat). The film also has the typical action-movie slow-mo, sound design that is all over the place, and the typical cliche of a man walking from screen right ("so clearly he must be going west!"). The characters are unfortunately not that well thought out as well. Take the various henchmen, they are all these tall or fat bald men that might have an overabundance of facial hair so they all look the same. Having some unique supporting characters might help round out the cast but instead we have throwaway characters like the blind mother (Jennifer Beal) or the old man (Michael Gambon) who lives down the road from the shanty-town where most of the movie is set. Gary Oldman doesn't deliver one of his memorable villainous performances and instead "chews the scenery." Denzel Washington portrays the lead as a violent and peaceful man that will fight for his religious beliefs despite the preaching found within the book he carries. The statement that is trying to be made with the Eli character doesn't work well in this script by Gary Whitta (of PC Gamer magazine fame) especially considering the only character with any emotion (and no need for skin ointment) is the young girl played by the beautiful Mila Kunis. The action sequences aren't even that special but they are at least the only scenes that are remotely interesting, exciting, or even complex. In the meantime there is no stable balance of emotion surrounding the book itself. In fact, I could care less about the book since there are two polar opposites (Washington's Eli and Oldman's Carnegie) vying for control of it. Also, a lot of people have been talking about the twist at the end but to me it feels like a "what the fuck" moment for a "what the fuck" moments' sake. It adds nothing to the character except make him seem more powerful (read as "badass") than he seems. The worst thing about this film, is that it doesn't grab your attention (despite how the entire first ten minutes are "meant" to be emotional). There is nothing inventive about this post-apocalyptic tale and when telling stories about the end of the world, that is what you need to be- inventive. Just having intensity... well that doesn't work unless you have drama which the directors (Albert Hughes and Allen Hughes) have demonstrated with their past films- Menace II Society as well as Dead Presidents. RATING: Bad
Andrew on Jan 16, 2010
#3 sealed it for me with the Christian angle. Not going to see and I don't drink their Kool Aid. Google The Flying Spaghetti Monster, now that's uplifting!
Flying Spaghetti Monster on Jan 16, 2010
i really liked it, the religion angle was forced down our throats so ppl hating because of that need to get over it
dahmer on Jan 16, 2010
i meant to say the religion angle was NOT forced down our throats
dahmer on Jan 16, 2010
I think #25 means, it WASN'T forced down our throats. Yes, the Christianity is not over the top and just a part of the story. Definitely not "drink the kool-aid" that was more of Avatar.
PGM on Jan 16, 2010
# to Alex Billington# Just to say i enjoyed your article for the Book of Eli. Streight to the point, You enjoyed it. No Wofferling, I'v not seen the film yet but your small article about it makes me want to go out and see it thanks.
Cineprog on Jan 16, 2010
Well hurrah, I'm an atheist now and God's a flying spaghetti monster. Christ it all makes sense now!
Tyler S on Jan 16, 2010
You know I went into this movie half hoping it wasn't about the bible because i suspected the "book" was of course the savior of all things right in the world as we know it right? This movie was so preachy and took forever to get anywhere in the middle of nowhere. I think Denzel laid a fat egg in this one and this movie was no different from the Passion of the Christ and is just another christian movie where people are trying to impose their religions on other people through the media.
Vin on Jan 16, 2010
This is an entertaining movie with strong performances where they count, and it also stands as one of the best of the Mad Max genre, with interesting twists here and there. John Nolte said it best: God, Guns, and Guts!
Vegeta on Jan 16, 2010
And it did NOT force Christianity down our throats, like Avatar did with its Pantheist worldview. In fact, the movie even includes a respectful nod to Jews and Muslims. Anyone who says this movie tries to impose a religion on anyone is quite mistaken.
Vegeta on Jan 16, 2010
#32 is 100% correct.
Al on Jan 16, 2010
It was definitely a good movie, not great but it was thought provoking. I've heard many talk about it being a Christian film. I guess you can view it that way, but I didn't. One, nothing ever happens to confirm (or deny) his faith. Also *SPOILER* at the end it is just placed next to other books of different faiths so it isn't held up as the correct one. Another thing is the film is also kind of anti-religion. The villain wants the book to control people, so while it may be pro-faith at the same time it explores the dangers of blind faith. I see the movie as saying it is knowledge, not religion that is going to save the world. Eli's book is just one story of many, of how they gathered books and other things to rebuild civilization. In fact, I kind of see it as a sequel of sorts to Fahrenheit 451. There was a nuclear war at the end and the book-keepers memorized books for when the world be rebuilt. In this film there was a war and the island is like the book-keepers. Also if I remember the book correctly isn't it the Bible that the guy takes in 451? Like I said Book of Eli isn't great, but definitely thought provoking.
Ralph on Jan 16, 2010
So the big question for me and my friends. Was whether or not Eli was blind?
McKenzie on Jan 16, 2010
I think Eli was blind but God granted him sight for his mission-once he neared the end of that mission he was blind again.
Christina on Jan 16, 2010
Truly Amazing film . completely loved it , considering seeing again
Mike on Jan 16, 2010
Anybody who thinks this movie is marketing Christianity really needs to watch it. The movie is about how faith can be a double edged sword. Some people can use it to subjugate and destroy. Others can find strength through through it. You could see it as anti-religion just as much as you could see it as pro-religion and the directors try hard not to make the movie about any particular religious text (only out of necessity).
Psy on Jan 16, 2010
I am certain Eli is Blind. I misinterpreted his lethargic motions as a type of shell shock, but I can see that if a person was blind in such a world, it was just caution in terrifying situations. He also used sound, smell and feel to replace the sight to move through his world. One of the reasons he would not have wanted anyone around him, his portrayal as a loner, was that he could only fool people for so long. BUT, he was much to accurate with the bow and arrow and the guns. I am going to have to see it again to sort that out. I went last night, and I am going again tomorrow. There are to many unanswered questions for me about the blindness. I would consider myself spiritual, not religious. I did not see this as either pro or anti religious. It was one mans journey through his life. That is the story of us all.
Rocky on Jan 16, 2010
DO NOT LISTEN TO THE IDIOTS THAT SAY ITS FORCING RELIGION ON YOU! THEY ARE LYING! I watched it opening night and it did not feel like a religious film but its ABOUT religion....two totally different things. The two action scenes is worth the admission. Please, get it to number 1...Avatar has had its time now. HH
Have Hope on Jan 16, 2010
am I missing something? why are people asking if he was blind? i thought the brail and them zooming in on his eyes kind of nailed that point.
Brian Ricci on Jan 16, 2010
My favorite movie of this year so far and last year. Actually its in my top five favorite movies right now. AWESOME!
Scott McHenry on Jan 16, 2010
It was good, actually, it was really good. Until the end . . . were they afraid to break the two hour mark? It seemed as though the Hughes Bros. found themselves quickly approaching two hours and needed a quick way out, so they rushed you to the end with lack luster story ties. This movie was very biblical and could have meant alot and really touched on some things. Rather than see all the plot lines through to their full potential, we got a quick fix. All it needed was maybe twenty, or thirty, minutes. Just to complete some of the central thoughts and really make the movie meaningful. Really, a wonderful movie. Denzel and Oldman really fit their characters. Oldman is probably the best villain out right now. The break down wasn't in the story, just poor planning . . . or direction?
ehhh on Jan 17, 2010
I enjoyed the film, and usually I don't like violent movies. The cinematography "euphemized" the gore so that it was tolerable for me. As for the religion angle, people of many different persuasions can read many things into it. Eli mostly quotes the Old Testament without a direct mention of the name "Jesus" anywhere in the film, so if it's meant to evangelize viewers into Protestant Christianity, it's not overt. I think each viewer might have a slightly different take on what the metaphors mean to them based on what a viewer has been exposed to in the realm of religion. As an example of how one viewer may differ from another in interpreting which religious philosophy is being touted, one might say it's a Mormon movie. Eli on a lone quest being hunted down for his faith might equate to Moroni, the final character in the Book of Mormon, being a lone man hunted by Lamanites. The lopping off of a man's hand or arm in defense of the book might be akin to Ammon, another Book of Mormon character, who lopped off the arms of marauders who tried to steal a king's livestock, overawing eyewitnesses to Ammon's prowess, a prowess that he, himself, attributed to God, or perhaps reminiscent of Nephi, the first character of the Book of Mormon, and his brothers, lopping off the head of Laban, contrary to Nephi's expressed abhorrence toward killing, to take possession of the scriptures of ancient Israel as they begin a journey to start a new civilization in the West, a civilization that would deteriorate quickly in the absence of those scriptures. The protection of the Bible as unique, and highly sought after by those who would use it in the wrong way might mesh with the story line of Joseph Smith, in the late 1820's, trying to hide and protect the Golden Plates, the purported origin of the Book of Mormon, from small-town ruffians who sought to seize the Golden Plates from Smith to melt them down for $$$. Yet another example of how a viewer might interpret the movie from a more secular, perhaps atheist, standpoint is that Carnegie is correct, religion is an opiate of the people, and political leaders wield religion to impose their own will upon masses that are chaotic and disorderly without religion's subordinating mechanism. Religious zeal, taken to extremes, could bring about self-fulfilling apocalyptic events performed by religionists obsessed with obeying schizophrenia-induced voices within their heads. At the end of the movie, the Bible was just another book on the shelf, part of a vast collection of books that were to be used in restoring literacy and humanity's literary heritage, thus the Bible wasn't necessarily the end-all and be-all for the renewal of civilization, just one piece of the puzzle, but if Eli's book were Harry Potter instead of the Bible, the movie would be hard-pressed to explain Eli's singular devotion to it's protection, so Eli's book had to be something that evoked some profound emotions within the protagonist. The message is not so much about promoting religion as the key to advancing civilization beyond a primordial level as much as it is about the empowering influence of literacy. In the days of slavery, slaveholders did not necessarily wish that their slaves could read. Likewise, Carnegie wielded power over his town not just because he knew a water source, but also because he was literate. He controlled the town's illiterate masses. He couldn't control Eli because Eli was not illiterate like the others. Eli can be respected as a protagonist because he is independent, and he is independent because he is literate, and the next step for civilization's recovery, and enhancing resistance to the tyranny of schemers like Carnegie, is to restore literacy. So these are two examples of how viewers may find alternative morals to the story than just the stereotypical evangelical Christian viewpoint. Don't use tunnel-vision while watching the movie, and you can see many viewpoints portrayed, and I don't believe any particular interpretation is shoved down anyone's throat. I give it two thumbs up.
Daniel Williamson on Jan 17, 2010
Nothing but fucking religious propoganda. Watch it if you are a jesus freak, you'll love it. Made for the "weak minded and desperate" masses.
Jeremy on Jan 17, 2010
Cory on Feb 28, 2011
I always promise myself I'm not going to write anything here, because the majority of you people are morons but dammit, here I am typing anyway. Book of Eli was awesome, I'm not religious but that doesn't mean I can't enjoy a movie that idiots like #45 call religious propaganda. To have a good story sometimes you need a little magic to help drive it, the idea that a divine force aided Eli in his travels... THAT'S AWESOME! That doesn't mean that you must be a "Jesus freak" to think it's cool. IN fact, was I the only one who noticed it was a King James bible? That in itself should have told you that it wasn't religious propaganda because King James flooded the bible with his own narrow minded views. It's just a cool movie, and in a post-apocalyptic future I can clearly see a King James bible being a source of inspiration and sought after by villains who want to influence large masses of people. Great concept, great execution, and as a fan of Fallout 3 I thought it was great that a filmmaker was finally obvious about their inspiration from a video game. Stop comparing it to The Road, it's nothing like The Road. Scavenging scene... check. Close up of a lock being picked with a bobby pin... check Eccentric cannibals living in the wasteland... check Bartering with wet naps... check. Super Mutant Behemoth that Denzel strikes down with the voice of God... check. Lol.
ThaSaltShaker on Jan 17, 2010
I alot of gratutious violence (especially against women. This is supposed to be a post-apocylptic world in the not too distant future, why are they all driving gas guzzling clunkers, where in the hell do they get the gas from to begin with. Shampoos they can not find, but 86 octane they can???? What bullshit...Where in the hell are they still producing bullets from, the picture should have ended with an asteroid hitting the planet and wiping out the whole mess. I was waiting for laser cats to show up and rid the planet of all humans.
Razzo on Jan 17, 2010
Hey #46... I'm truly not surprised by the number of you that are too stupid to get all of the religious symbolism that is blatantly thrown in your face. Guess if that's what it takes to enjoy this movie... good for you.
Jeremy on Jan 17, 2010
I loved it It had great depth with the scripture passages like walk by faith not by sight.I want to see it again now that I have seen the end.It seems God must have completely lead him from the start.
doorman on Jan 17, 2010
First of all, #48, learn how to articulate a proper sentence before trying ed-jama-cate me on religion symbolism. I get the symbolism, but I'm smart enough to see it as such and enjoy the movie. It's not like I went out and bought a bible and accepted Jesus as my savior after I saw this movie. I got one word for you... tool.
ThaSaltShaker on Jan 17, 2010
Mila Kunis is not ready. Jennifer Beal would have done better in that role. She looks great!
Katrina on Jan 17, 2010
I think #34 & 38 hit it on the head. I enjoyed the movie. Glad to see all those designer sunglasses make it through the apocalypse.
S on Jan 18, 2010
Damnit people... what is with the f'in spoilers - I came on here to read how much you liked the movie not that Denzel is blind... argh!
Nate on Jan 18, 2010
#53 Nate don't worry about that. I don't think anyone really knows whether he is blind or not. They never really say that because it's not clear.
Mike on Jan 18, 2010
I saw it a second time. They imply he is blind many, many times, but 54 is correct, they never outright state it. I think for the movie to work, the viewer needs to do the same thin Eli does. And that is to accept on faith that he would be able to accomplish his tasks if he where blind by accepting that he is something greater than just the sum of his parts. In other words, something greater than him is driving him forward. This is a movie about faith, not necessarily in God, but in one mans desire to accomplish the impossible. The movie works if you accept that he is blind and faith drives him forward. If he is sighted, then he is just a zealot that will kill everything in his way to please the voices in his head.
Rocky on Jan 18, 2010
When my friend ask me to view this film, I wanted to watch Avatar again. And now that I watched The Book of Eli, I wish I had watch Avatar again instead. The Book of Eli was ok, but not great and far from excellent. The plot was far too predictable, and the twist in the end was just not enough to make this film "watchable". The post apocalypse "theme" they had in the picture was just overused and scene to scene just feels like the entire movie was filmed in a studio (300 ahemmm). The rowboat was poorly done, and the action sequence isnt anything that viewers havent seen before. Washington and Grey is fantastic as always, but the plot and picture could really use some improvments. The only lasting memory that I would have with this movie was the beauty of Mila Kunis's eyes. 2.5/5 AA
awesomealvin on Jan 18, 2010
Great movie, well done. Good story, nice "twist." (It's only a twist if you stopped paying attention 30 seconds in.) The movie does have religious overtones, but that is not what makes it good or bad. If you can't seperate your personal beliefs from your judgment of what makes a good "movie" then you really shouldn't be commenting on movies.
Houston on Jan 18, 2010
As far as Eli being blind, that is fairly obvious by the end of the movie. What I think everyone here is afraid to admit is that the movie is only plausible if you accept that a greater being or force, in this case God, is driving Eli, and protecting him. Accepting that allows one to enjoy the movie. You don't have to accept that God exists in real life, but you do have to accept that, in the movie He does. For those who vehemently hate or disbelieve in God, I'd say for the purposes of this movie, imagine that it is "the force" from Star Wars, or Gia, or something else protecting and driving him as, clearly, SOMETHING is. In this way, you can accurately judge the value of the movie without your personal faith, or lack thereof, getting in the way.
Houston on Jan 18, 2010
I agree with 34, ***SPOILER*** the film is anti-religion, but not anti-faith or anti-God. On another note, I learned that the placement of the Bible at the end next to other books of faith was something the studio forced the Hughes Brothers to do. The other books were never intended to be in the shot. The studio had them added so as not to hurt anyone's feelings. I'm not saying I agree one way or the other, but that is a fact.
H on Jan 18, 2010
Okay, LOOOOOOVED the movie! I had to go back and watch the last hour of it tonight because of some annoying lip-smacking, lugie-hocking, loud-talker person sitting behind me. The hour that I DID get to see had caught my attention, and I had no idea about the religious plot of the movie. I knew nothing about the movie when I went to see it. So we just got back from all of it this time, and I was very moved. Let me say to all those bashing it for it's Christian overtones. I grew up in an evangelical environment, and I truly know what it means to cram religion down someone's throat. Although Christianity was a HUGE part of my past, I am a career scientist who is very skeptical of all religions and the concept of a "higher being". I don't consider myself an atheist, but I'm not convinced that there is a god who is directing everything from on high. This movie did NOT cram Christianity down anybody's throat. The ending convinced me that the main message here is the preservation and continuation of humankind's cultural past. If the movie had been about Washington's character safeguarding the Kuran, I would've been moved just as equally.
etsie538 on Jan 18, 2010
# 46, The main theme in "The Road" and "The Book of Eli" are one and the same. In "The Road" the Man tries to get the Boy to saftey using faith alone that they will find a better place and in "The Book of Eli" Eli wanders the wastelands on faith alone that he'll find the proper resting place for the last surving copy of the bible. Add the fact that both films take place in a post-apocalyptic world and are about their main characters being on a journey and it couldn't be more obvious that they are very similiar. As for "The Book of Eli" it was ok at best. The film did not shove christianity down the viewer's throat but the religious overtones were copious and heavy-handed to the point of becoming annoying. Instead of striking out on new ground, "Eli" borrows from too many other films ("The Road Warrior", "Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome","Steel Dawn" and "The Road" among them.
JoeM on Jan 18, 2010
My familiy and I enjoyed the movie it was exciting and exactly what was needed for the times of today. Unfortunately, there are those who for some reason have the belief that by bashing Chrisitanity, there lives will be any better. If you have a relationship with Christ then either the entire movie or parts of the movie will touch you in different ways. If you do not, that is something for you to live with. However, you like to describe it, I found it refreshing to note two more persons in the film world were willing to provide Christians with a well made movie that was not afraid to put God first. Too often, films are made glorifying the ills of the world without any consequences. I will leave you all with this, for those who choose not to belive in Jesus Christ and find it odd that so many others do; think on this: - At the end of your life and when (if - for those who are not sure) Jesus returns and he asks you what you did with what he gave you, what will you say? - The second question is, if you chose to believe and he never shows up, what harm was there in believing? - Is it really worth taking the chance in not accepting him as your personal saviour?
Blade on Jan 18, 2010
I would like to start off by saying hey to everyone who choose to leave a comment. First off the movie was great in my eyes but like anything that people view it could of had extra this or extra that or less of this or less of that. Thats human nature on everything!!! The movie makes you want to research the bible or just plan out see it again because it was that good. I do wish it was 30 more mins to the film but im glad that these two brothers are back using the gift that god gave them. I was glad to read some people view on the movie cause i was wondering was he blind or not but as i replayed the whole movie in my head i know now that he was blind. I love the concept of the whole thing. Also for the people on the religious part if you are a real movie watcher every movie thats ever been put out has some type of religion in it and if not every move at least 80percent. keep in mind this a blog site so that means anyone who is ignorant can leave a comment so dont let them scare you from going to go see the movie yourself
alex on Jan 18, 2010
We don't know where Eli started his journey. But even if he started on the east coast, would it take him 30 years to reach San Francisco?
sara on Jan 18, 2010
I'm glad I saw this and not Avatar. Still not sure about that movie.
radiogorillaz on Jan 19, 2010
@ 64, The answer is yes, if that is how much time it would take for Eli to learn everything God wanted him to learn in that lifetime, which would end upon "The Rock". Moses led the Israelites through the wilderness for 40 years, instead of taking them as quickly as possible to their destination. The reason for this was so that the older generation (and their sins) would mostly have died off before entering the Promised Land. And the (more) innocent youth, who had been brought up in the right way, would enter. In those 30 years, much of Eli's dross was purged too. I thought the movie had many positive examples of blind faith (trust in God not organized religion) and courage. And I enjoyed it. Pity about the ending which is silly. After all that Eli had been through, The Book simply becomes just another on the shelf. When Eli had said he was looking for a place where the people would use it for good. Someone mentioned this was at the studio's request, and this wouldn't surprise me. Personally, I'd have done the ending like so:- The white-haired man pulls a copy of the Koran off the shelf and reads a passage from it. Sura 32:23. We did indeed aforetime give the Book (Torah) to Moses: be then NOT IN DOUBT of its (The Torah) reaching (THEE): and We made it a Guide to the Children of Israel. And then he'd say, "now The Book is complete".
Danny on Jan 19, 2010
64. Even if he walked one mile a day and took two days off between them, it still would not have taken 30 years. His comparison to Moses is a stretch, as the movie already makes to much demand on us. An example is when he leaves the town after the gunfight. He has about a half day advantage on the pursuers, but it takes them about 24 hours to catch him. It should have been mo more than an hour.
Bob on Jan 19, 2010
1) on the blind part, i'd have to see it again to make sure but when they zoomed into his eye's too me it looked like his pupil's and iris's were the same color, there was a hint of pupil difference but not much like they could have been 'burned' from seeing the flash. And all the other signs people mentioned make sense too. 2) on the religious part, it seemed to me both for and against religion. Especially Oldman's considering it a weapon against the weak willed, and people doing what he tells him as long as its from the book. That seems to point out how most religions through history have twisted passages from their 'holy' words to get followers to do bad things. The fact that people burned the bibles blaming it for the war leads me to believe the war may have been against some other religious faction/group, they don't mention other books but I wouldn't doubt if those had been burned too when found. He does use 'inspirational' quotes but those could be from any other religious book too, many of them have passages that would help to guide one morally, that's their original purpose. Their meanings are usually the same (at least until later 'editions' where things get added or changed) the names/places are just 'fluff'. I very much like that he didn't mention the JC name, it serves no purpose, the christians can think its for them since its a bible, the jewish can connect to it since the parts he reads are usually from Their book, and those of other faiths can possibly connect it to passages from theirs. 3) God guiding him? I doubt it, Faith yes. When the world as we know it ends people are going to latch on to many things just to keep themselves going, usually just the drive to survive. After the shock of the 'flash' and losing your sight you might start to hear voices too, his just gave him a reason to survive and something to strive for, a goal other than just finding food and water.
Jason on Jan 19, 2010
13 Dead Giveaways you probably missed in 'The Book of Eli'. http://tinyurl.com/yd8wf5k
jdavidbeatty on Jan 20, 2010
Here's something to chew on. In the Old Testement book of 1 Samuel, there is a priest named Eli who by chapter 3 has become blind. Interesting story to read and may broaden our interpretation of the character in the movie. If not, it's still interesting.
Xtian on Jan 22, 2010
loved every min of it... especially re-caping the movie , after discovering the ending! have to watch it again
vick on Jan 23, 2010
Anytime I watch a movie that so heavily hinges upon a plot twist that the 2nd time watching is not nearly as fun once you're privy to the climax (or you're just watching to find clues you missed before), I suddenly feel the urge to write a novel just to show the pros what a coherent story looks like. Three pages later I always quit, but I digress. I can be overly critical, nitpicky, even anal on some days, but it seems disrespectful to me that million dollar budget projects can be so inconsistent. It's almost like the script is an afterthought. Ridiculous considering the many adaptations spawned by what are more or less solid IP. I was so pumped from the initial "sword" fight that I thought this was going to be matrix-like. Sadly it dwindled to a standstill and I was left with predictable filler. 1hour 50min, that's just crazy.
Anthony Alexander on Jan 23, 2010
There really was NO plot twist. If you didn't know what was happening or what was to come by the end then you weren't really paying attention. It was a pretty decent movie with sweet action (even if it was only a little bit from just a couple parts) and a good script. It couldn't have gone much different and they didn't shove religion down your throat. I'm not opposed to religious storylines but this wasn't all in your face religious movie anyway. It was just enough to get the point across and done in a classy way in a post-apocalyptic world. Denzel was fine as always and Mila Kunis was a great casting call for this movie. She did a great job. If you haven't seen the Book of Eli I would definitely check it out as a moviegoer.
jake the snake on Jan 25, 2010
Eli was blind throughout the whole movie there are many points that show this like in the beginning of the movie when his ipod dies he taps away at the play pause button like it is broken. Under the overpass he steps back under the overpass to give himself equal fighting grounds so his attackers are just as blind as him. ANd last but not least in the shootout in the city when he is leaving, his attackers always shoot at him first, then he retaliates now this obviously takes place after the apocolypse so he has had to try to adapt quickly to survive
book of eli amazing on Jan 25, 2010
Go ahead and bash it Christianity haters. You're all going to burn in hell anyway so I could care less what you people have issues with. Are you starting to get warm yet???
Spoonball on Feb 3, 2010
A good movie. As a Christian, I appreciated the fact that a top movie came out of Hollywood that didn't bash God or those who believe in God. Regarding Christianity, the only reference I saw to Jesus was the cross on the front of the bible. To my limited knowledge, the scripture quoted was Old Testament. And, yes, to those who believe in God, God would have chosen Eli to perform the task of getting the bible to its intended destination, and protected him along the way. And why it took 30 yrs? Eli had to memorize the bible and grow in faith. AS for the ending, the female character had been listening to Eli, first in the room where she learned to pray, then on the road, and finally while he recited the bible. Maybe she was the first "disciple" of the new age. As far as whether Eli was blind throughout the movie, remember the old couples "no trespassing" sign? Eli apologized for missing it when he walked right past it. But this movie doensn't force any ideas down anyone's throat, and people shouldn't be afraid of getting unwanted indoctrination at the movie. Just enjoy the story.
Barbie on Feb 4, 2010
#75 That comment is not very christian.
Ed on Feb 4, 2010
#7 Did you even really watch the movie? Like really? Ok, yeah, the bible was in it blah blah blah blah...but it's just about Eli fighting the good fight. Common guys, the movie was frekin' awesome and the story line was excellent. Man, hate it when people leave little, short, ignorant comments like that. It's just uneccessary.
Loved the movie on Feb 15, 2010
Hello Mr. Albert and Mr Allen Hughes Greeting from Detroit, Michigan, last night my husband and I went to see the move The Book of Eli and I Pray that the Lord Bless you all with all kinds of awards for this movie. We enjoyed it from the beginning to the end. One of my sons seen it before we did and when we came home he started asking all kinds of questions and when I pointed out the this, that and the other he said oh yea I see it now. I would like to take this time to Pray if you don't mind. Father in the name of Jesus I ask that you touch each and everyone who had their hands working in this movie to make it such a success. God continue to bless these your people, keep your wings of protections around them and their families in your son Jesus I Pray Amen. Love You All your in Christ Brenda
Brenda Carr on Feb 15, 2010
Has it occurred to anyone that this film is yet another form of not so subtle indoctrination? We are given a "hero" that walks 30 years (anyone remember the Israelites?) because he "heard a voice" and he just "knows" that it was G-d speaking to him, to protect and deliver into the proper hands the last remaining bible on earth. Then we have our arch villain that wants the book so desperately he is willing to kill for it (repeatedly) because (in his own words) it has been used to control the masses for centuries and if it worked before it will work again. Then Eli (mis) quotes a passage from the bible and states that you must do for others before you do for yourself ~ suggesting that the G-d of the bible is a hard taskmaster and that He requires complete self sacrifice, when in reality, this is nowhere in the bible. Biblically we are told to "Do Unto Others As You Would Have Them Do Unto You". Nowhere does it say that we are to neglect ourselves and do for others first. Throughout this movie there are unspoken messages that convey a single message. Allegiance to the G-d of the bible is a losing proposition filled with nothing but sorrow and death. Does no one see the subtle message here? That the bible is not G-ds word, it is a political tool. Then we are told that Eli knows he is protected by G-d because his mission is too important. He has to find the right person to deliver to book to. Yet G-d allows him to be shot and finally killed. So what happened to being protected? What does this say about G-d? That He will protect or that He cannot be trusted? If you were 14 years old and growing up in a society that is more and more of the world and farther and farther removed from G-d, think about what this movie would say to you....
April on Apr 18, 2010
@April, Eli wasn't shot and killed. He was shot, yes, but he died of what we can only assume to be old age or illness. So one could even interpret that "G-d" kept him alive despite a bullet wound to the torso so he could finish his task and live in peace, which the film suggests he did.
Stormwire on Apr 18, 2010
I'm amazed at the symbolism in the movie. Could some other reviewers share their thoughts on the underlying story...I know I'm missing some of it. For example, the movie implies that the bomb was from China. George and Martha bought out their china for tea. Also the name of the character REDridge, so possible involvement from Russia also. (Hughes wrote that the china might have additional meaning. Otherwise this would seem a stretch.) The song "ring my bell", playing on George's player, obviously meant (to me), "Ring my doorbell. Come in, so we can dine upon you." The first cat in the movie, which Eli ate, gets revenge (symbolically) through the 2nd cat in the bar. Eli PERHAPS should not have killed the 1st cat because cats are pets, but under the circ's in the movie, it was of course completely understandable. But since it a questionable practice to eat a pet, the 2nd cat shows up and howls at Eli. Eli shoves the cat away (the way he must gently shove women from him like Solara). The cat episode in the bar invites trouble from the biker. Eli slams the biker's head in the bar, and tells him that what he was doing outside of town will catch up to him eventually. So Eli's killing of the 1st cat also catches up to him in the episode of the 2nd cat. What you reap is sowed by the biker and to an extent by Eli, because the 2nd cat episode gets Eli into the bar fight. Claudia means disabled and one who perseveres. Solara's name fits the movie for obvious reasons. Andrew Carnegie was well known for contributing funds for the establishment of libraries. So Carnegie in the movie is in this sense an anti-Andrew Carnegie. Carnegie in the movie is anti religion. Their are other parallels in the movie, but what do other reviewers see?
markw on Apr 24, 2010
I didn't see it in theaters, but plan to watch it on nutflix or demand.
RSH on May 12, 2010
was he blind all along,,,i think not,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,at the end of the movie,,,,,look at his eyes as they go from nornal brown eyes to the blinded gray,,,,,,,,,,he was allowed to see until his task was nearly done,,,,his eyesight was taken away so he could concentrate on giving accurate information for the writer to take down,,,,plus,,,,remember how he kept himself clean,,and at the end while he was dying all his body hair was shaved,,,,then,,dressed in the gown,,,,,im guessing he was muslim by origin but,,following gods orders to the letter regarless of religions,,,,,,,,,,watch the end again and you will see these things,,,,,,,,,,
barry on May 27, 2010
barry watch the beginning of the movie and when they are in the hotel room. you'll know he was blind the whole time.
jake the snake on May 27, 2010
Not a very good portrayal of a blind man, possibly on purpose in order to mislead, The movie was a mix of truth an fiction because truly blind people do not look up or down and make eye contact or can notice that others are blind as well. Beals did a much better job at that but, once again possibly to mislead.
robert on May 29, 2010
This movie is like the Matrix. You need to watch it multiple times to catch all the hidden meanings and innuendo. It is much deeper than you think from only watching it once. I am of the mind that "Hollywood" has its own agenda as far as messages they want to indoctrinate us with and although they use the entertainment medium as their message delivery system, there is still ALWAYS a message they are delivering. There are only 4 main companies that own each and every studio in Hollywood and those companies without exception are owned by Zionist Jews and this has been the case for almost a century now. Do you really think Zionist Jews are sympathetic to the Goyim and want to make a movie that glorifies Christianity? This movie is an indoctrination movie and has many messages. Please do a little research ~ there are hundreds of well informed journalists that have done expose's on what is really going on in the media and especially in Hollywood. Check out Vigilant Citizen or The Forbidden Knowledge sites..... then watch this movie again after you have done your research. I look forward to hearing what you have to say afterwards.
April on Jun 17, 2010
Religious? Don't think so! If you were in this chaotic aftermath, you would hope there is a God who looks after good men. Remember the Book of Judges? The stories are very similar: chaos and murder ruled, until someone was raised up to restore hope. Think of Samson, or Gideon. Every element of a redeeming epic tale is in this work. And surprisingly, the violence, however gruesome, makes sense. It shows that faith in God is a matter of courage and perseverance. I hope that the Hughes Brothers will tackle the best challenge of inspirational movie-making: The Book of Acts of the Apostles. There is no greater work that I know which tells the saga of courageous and devoted men, beaten, but not discouraged; killed, and yet victorious; rejected, and yet they are those who "turned the World upside-down".
C J Barton on Jun 18, 2010
this is progamming like Matrix, World after humans, etc...all media these days is getting you accustomed to what they plan to do to you. The Bible people that think this is pro - christian, think again--it's much more complex than that. Study Hollywood, it's writers, their agenda ( NWO). Vigilantcitizen.com is good place to start. Dprogram.net for further study Infowars.com ( daily updates)
mbaucum on Jun 20, 2010
Interesting movie conceptually, but more like an abstract painting's open interpretation - rather than any well crafted Rembrandt illusion of reality. It's either a massive technical goof being interpreted as genius by mostly those that feed on the supernatural, or interesting marketing exercise in a chameleon like story that changes it's color depending on the viewer's needs and background to appeal to the broadest market and create the largest profit possible. For me, it never occurred to me that Eli was blind in the movie - even after the braille Bible made its appearance. If I had known he was supposed to be blind in the movie, it would have been far less entertaining, because it would have been sooo far from reality it would not have been remotely believable. If Eli was blind through out the movie - then the movie is of the same genre as Godzilla - just plain camp, because I've known quite a few blind people with heightened senses and Washington didn't have any their behavioral mannerisms in the movie, mythically exceeded the possible reality and was not believably blind. I found several interesting perspectives religiously - that like Jesus in the end he is abandoned as soon as he fulfills his story's need and dies like any other man - and in the most basic reality analysis a crude and badly used tool rather than anything special. Certainly not logically the son of a loving merciful deity. Another great advertisement for people who assume they are doing some supposed all powerful deity's bidding (as if the creator of the universe(s) deity needed someone to do their bidding) and then inevitably ends up disillusioned (“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”—Luke 24:44.) and badly used. Another interesting religious story problematics is that the post apocalypse world interpreted religion as the cause of the war and burned the Bible - but what was the fate of other religious texts? However, after Eli regurgitates his memory of the Bible - at least as good and as accurate a memory as all the monks, priests and political manipulators who interpreted the book in the past - up to and into the book we call the Bible today. More interestingly was in the closing scene when the newly printed Bible is put on the shelf - it is put on shelf with man's other great pieces of literature - not on a shelf by itself, not on an alter or in a sacred place. In the future the bible has become an artifact of our literature rather than a center piece of a supernatural cult - again an interpretation colored by the viewer. Reading the comments, it's clear that Christian religious addicts will consume The Book of Eli as some post modern New Testament extenstion. While perhaps the few critical thinkers will see it as a loosely woven story/movie such that it's can be a "one size fits all" imaginatively and intellectually. Unfortunately, like most "one size fits all garments" - in reality it fits no discerning person really well.
Masxon X Hamilton on Jun 21, 2010
i thought he wuz feeling the sun on his face to get his direction each time he began to walk. just like in the shooting scene, he shot each person who fired at him which gave away their location. but dats just my silly thought.
me on Jun 23, 2010
What was up with the IPod?
Monte on Jun 23, 2010
Well if you follow the story its about the word of the Lord, he (Eli) was chosen for his strong soul and his pure spirit. He may not have been blind at one time but as the movie and the years moved forward and he got closer to his final destiny his sight got dimmer considering that the Sun was brighter then usual which is why every one wore goggles or sun glasses or a form of protection. Remember that the Ozone layer was damaged and for thirty years the Earth had suffer along with those whom survived. When you are spoken to by the Lord like Eli had he will reward you for your determination and Faith. At the end he was made a Saint which is the reason his eyes are glazed, the Lord lead his way during the task and the Lord will lead his way in darkness in the after life. So he was not blind at birth, rather he gradually became as he got closer to the end of his journey. Great movie great story at the end Kunis is to to take over and pass the word of the Lord, it will be interesting to see if they make a sequal. Great job Guys, BoBfirstname.lastname@example.org
BOB on Jun 24, 2010
I have had a massive argument with my friend as to weather or not Eli is actually blind. We went through the official screenplay and found this Eli-Are you ready? Lombardi-What exactly am I writing? Eli-Pay close attention and write down every word exactly as I say it. Eli removes his goggles. Solara can't believe what she sees. His eyes are pale, milky-white, dead. TOTALLY BLIND. This is exact reference to the official screenplay. http://www.mediafire.com/?i3mrmnmymkm (REFERENCE)
Awesome on Jul 4, 2010
Did your friend not watch the movie? Did they notice anything about the book once it was opened? Is your friend blind?
jake the snake on Jul 4, 2010
I think that Eli's sight was failing him. I believe he said the book was given to him, so someway he learned to read braile, since it was in braile. Eli in the Bible was the same, his sight was failing him, and became completely blind at the end of his life. Eli in the movie was also wearing a ephod in the last scene, which is a white linen type of dress that only the high priests wore. There were other types of colors, but seems like the white linen was the one worn in the book of Samuel, because a mother made it for her son, Samuel. If Eli did have a mission from God, then he was protected, as he told the girl when they were in the house with the old people and getting shot at, that they were to be protected. When she asked about the old people, he said, I don't know about them. When Eli was shot, he had a blank surprised look on his face, as if, this is not suppose to happen. Am I now going to die? He had just give the book to the bad guy, however, as we later found out, God allowed him to have more life to continue his mission. The girl was somehow part of the plan. I do not think Eli could save the woman that was killed, he was too far away, and would have been in full range, but he did kill the guy who killed her, saying, I know what you did. Most of the people on earth were evil. I believe that Eli was given special fighting abilities from God and could see through God's eyes. He was shot at one other time in the back, and was not killed. He was wanting to be in God's favor, as Eli in the Bible was not, and considered a bad father to his wicked sons. When he took the girl under his wing, taught her about prayer, and some scriptures in the bible, he was becoming a good father role, which I believe was important as proving to God he was going to do good by this girl. She in turn, took up his mission, and went into the world with the word of God.. The book was important, but the fate of the girl was as well.
Susan on Jul 9, 2010
In the Book of Samuel, it speaks of the ark of the covenant, and how it kept getting into the wrong hands. The bad guy in this film was looking at it as it he could control people with it, and also he wanted to be King. I am not sure if the mother could read the braile bible or not, but when she touched it, she felt the holiness and love. She knew that it was not to be available to him, who was going to use it to become king of the world. Her daughter was going to do some kick butt herself, and have it for the good of the people. So much was left out of the movie, and as a Christian, I was looking for Christ's role to be mentioned, however, when he said the clouds parted and the sun came down and burned everything, I thought, was it a war or the end.. the good people were all taken to Heaven, except maybe the ones that God wanted to stay to help rebuild the new world. I have a strong urge to study the bible more, and I think for this reason, this movie is a great film, if it encourages people to put down the video games and such, and read the word of God. Like Eli said, in the old world, people had too much, and too for granted what people are killing for now. It is one to think about and learn something about ourselves.
Susan on Jul 9, 2010
nuff said already, totally awesome movie ! except that totally stupid ipod commercial in the end, whut was that about ?
lardo on Jul 25, 2010
"...blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed." John 20:24-29
Morgan on Sep 23, 2010
Haha the book of Eli! All of you would probably disagree with me but watching the Book of Eli in English Class trying to annalyses every minute of it wasnt af fun as I thought! Unfortunately I figured out he was blind after the first few minutes of the film and after that it sort of went downhill. Glad some of you enjoyed it and as long as I do well in my Exam writing about it I will be very Happy!! Peace out of all you plp who believe there is no God or there is a God!! I just hope at the end of our world you are all right about your beliefs ..... Ps. Dont forget to charge your Ipods before the end of the world!! and Keep a few BEEGEE songs on there 2! Haha....Dont take life to seriously!
Abigail on Nov 2, 2010
When is hollywood gonna grow the balls to call a spade a spade, like naming the movie "the book of allah" since any nuclear war likely to result in the destruction of the U S because of religious beliefs would probably be muslims.
joe shmoee on Dec 21, 2010
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