Ben Barnes is like the seventh son of a seventh son or something, and this means he’s special and has flashbacks. It also means that when Jeff Bridges’ current apprentice Kit Harington dies Ben Barnes must take his place. Together they will train to defeat Julianne Moore before the next red moon.
Seventh son is a film with modest goals that takes its genre for granted. The creators apparently thought that making a successful fantasy action movie is easy, it’s really not. And painting by numbers will only get you so far. Just look at Eragon. So while Seventh Son does a lot of box ticking, it does literally nothing else.
The performances here are a mixed bag with Ben Barnes being as un-charismatic as ever, Jeff Bridges fairly awful actually and Julianne Moore putting on of the couple decent turns in the film. Alicia Vikander provides the other. But I don’t blame anyone for not putting themselves into the roles because it’s not like there are any characters anyway. Bridges’ spook’s only personality traits are that he’s a bit of a dick and has an odd voice. The Oscar winning Julianne Moore is reduced to playing a witch whose only trait is that she’s evil (mind you she still manages to take it within her stride).
There are things that I liked about the movie: the monster design is quite cool and the fights with these beasties are decent enough, if derivative, the set designs were quite nice and wherever it was shot is aesthetically pleasing.
Bad performances, lack in any character development at all and unimaginative story would all be forgivable offences if it wasn’t for the fact that Seventh Son is dreadfully boring. For long stretches of the movie very little happens and most of it is taken up by Ben Barnes walking around looking un-charismatic, Jeff Bridges saying something dicky in a weird voice and then Ben Barnes making a un-funny response. It also has some truly awful pacing issues, in that it manages to start really slowly but at the same time give the characters no real introductions or explain the backstory in any way.
Overall, it’s pretty rubbish. When the monster fights do eventually happen they are decent enough, but really I wouldn’t bother going to see this. It’s not as bad as Eragon but it’s getting close.