Monday, May 10, 2010

Legion – Scott Stewart (2010)

This movie has an enormous caveat and I’ll just give it to you up front. If you are not a horror movie fan, you will hate this movie.

Most horror/action movie fans will probably not like this movie.

However, if you’re a devoted horror buff who would rather watch a horror movie – any horror movie – than anything else, “Legion” is not a horrible waste of your time. If you love the genre, there are enough fun moments to justify the 90 minutes of life you’ll spend on it.

Take every zombie you’ve ever seen that pits a small, spunky group of survivors holed up in a big house, church, diner, etc. then replace zombie infection with demon possession. Then steal a plot twist from 1995’s “The Prophecy,” and write the worst dialogue known to man. Now, you have “Legion.”

“Legion” opens with an entertaining little sequence where a fallen angel meets, a couple of racist, then possessed, then dead cops. That’s followed by an ominous warning from some unidentified entity. It would have been nice if it was frightening, but we’ll have to settle for amusing.

Predictably, we are taken to a town that, if you’ve ever seen a horror movie in your life, we know is doomed. The name of the town is “Paradise Falls” and that is about as subtle as the film gets.

One pleasant surprise was that at one point, the truck stop’s jukebox plays, “I Just Don’t Understand” by Ann Margaret. I thought I was the only fan of that song.

As the first act starts, we meet our usual cast of characters that we know will be stuck together in the truck stop for the duration of the film.

There’s the spunky, pregnant soon-to-be single mother and the schmuck who follows her around like a puppy, nobly devoted to her even though she’s carrying another man’s child and won’t give him the time of day.

Then there’s the bickering middle-aged couple and their smart-alek teen. Of course, we’re given the troubled young man who’s running from his own personal demons, We have the truck stop owner whose life is a miserable failure because, well, he’s a truck stop owner.

And then there’s a fry-cook.

The siege begins with a crazy old lady who turns out to be possessed. I’m sure you’re familiar with the trailer. “Legion” is probably best known as ‘that movie that has the freaky old woman climbing on the ceiling.’

This sequence is admittedly entertaining. And there are a few more amusing scenes, one of which involves one of our doomed battalion being crucified upside-down and having his blood replaced with acid-pus.
And the action sequences when the truck-stop is under siege are fun enough to watch.

But at the end of the day, “Legion” plays out like a traditional zombie movie with a twist.

Aside from my theory that someone thought seeing an old woman crawling up the ceiling would lure horror fans into a movie theater, I can’t think of a single reason why this film didn’t go straight to DVD.

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