Spectacular costumes, sets and super-duper special effects, but where were you, Jeff Bridges?
Jeff Bridges, as Master Gregory, for some unknown reason, was allowed to get away with a voice that is so false and amateurish that he ruins this film. Where was the director, Sergey Bodrov? All I can surmise is that Jeff Bridges was the bankable star who brought in the financing which allowed him to run the show. Didn't anyone hear how horrible and laughable his scratchy, cantankerous, voice straight from an-old-cowboy-from-the-mid-west was for a spook? Bridges has a fine voice in his own right. Why did he feel he had to invent a phony one?
Julianna Moore is stunning as Mother Malkin, the mother of all evil witches and does not miss a beat. She changes from a flying dragon into a cloud of smoke then swirls like a tornado into a fantastically coiffed and gowned witch with finger nails from here to Peoria. Her makeup is beautifully drawn and perfect like any witches eyeliner should be, but it is her acting, again, that commands the screen with her regal, evil presence. But why, oh why, didn't Julianna Moore say something to the director or to Jeff Bridges about his "Awe-shucks! -I-didn't-know-I-was-a-spook" voice?
The plot is simple. Master Gregory is the local head spook whose purpose is to kill evil spirits. Seventh Son is camp and great fun. Just wish I had brought ear plugs for the scenes with Jeff Bridges who should be seen but not heard. Ben Barnes plays young Thomas who is the apprentice to Master Gregory (Bridges) and being trained to kill witches. He falls in love with young Alice, Alicia Vikander, who plays this young enchanting witch with rich emotional depth.
Kit Harrington has a small role in the beginning of Seventh Son, and I would have preferred to see him in the lead as he is such an eyeful and his sincerity tops that Ben Barnes who plays head apprentice of Master Gregory. But it is Olivia Williams as young Thomas's mother who steals the moments she is on camera with her soulful gaze and genuine delivery. She is a fine actress and, here, a fine witch.
I was happy I had seen Seventh Son as its views of Canada and China filmed in IMAX are unforgettable. If a medieval fantasy film is your genre, grab it- - just restrain yourself from throwing popcorn at the screen every time Jeff Bridges opens his mouth.