Life is what happens when you are making other plans~ John Lennon
An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind~Gandhi
The time is always right to do what is right~ Martin Luther King Jr.

Monday, May 7, 2012

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

IDK why, but this is one of my favorite movies ever!

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
-2003 superhero film based on characters from the comic book The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Alan Moore
-Stars Sean Connery as Alan Quartermain, Naseeruddin Shah as Captain Nemo, Peta Wilson as Mina Harker, Tony Curran as the Invisible Man, Stuart Townshend as Dorian Gray, Shane West as Tom Sawyer, Jason Flemyng as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Richard Roxburgh as Fathom/Dr. M/Professor James Moriarty
Did You Know?
-Connery's last film before retiring from acting
-Similar to From Hell, which was also a comic book from Alan Moore, the scenes in this movie that were supposed to be London were actually Prague
-The film's literary characters are as follows: Alan Quartermain(H. Rider Haggard's King Solomon's Mines, 1885), Mina Harker(Bram Stoker's Dracula, 1897), Henry Jekyll and Edward Hyde(Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, 1886), Rodney Skinner(replaced from H.G. Well's The Invisible Man due to issues, 1897), Captain Nemo(Jules Vern's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, 1870), Dorian Gray(Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891), Tow Sawyer(Mark Twain's The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, 1876), Ishmael(Herman Melville's Moby Dick, 1851), Professor James Moriarty(Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Final Problem, 1893), Fathom's mask(Gaston Leroux's Phantom of the Opera, 1911), British Intelligence chief "M"(Casino Royale, 1953)
-English comedian Eddie Izzard read for the part of Rodney Skinner/The Invisible Man
-Quartermain, Nemo, Jekyll/Hyde, Dorian Gray and Professor M all "died" in their original stories. In the novel "The Invisible Man", Dr. Griffin went crazy and was killed. Here, Skinner says he stole it from a crazy doctor to avoid rights issues. And in fact, the original characters Nemo, The Invisible Man and Mr. Hyde were far from heroes. Nemo was a rebel and a threat to the British crown in India and The Invisible Man and Mr. Hyde were murderers and rapists
-The character Tom Sawyer was added because it was thought it would not appeal to an American audience unless an American cast member and character were in it.
-Captain Nemo is seen performing martial arts throughout the movie. He is performing the martial arts discpline of Shin Sun Do, thought to have originated in India

-In an alternate versio of 1899, the Bank of England in London is attacked by a group of men who appear to be wearing German uniforms, attacking with advanced explosives, automatic weapons, and an armored tank. after that is an attack on a Zeppelin factory in Berlin and several German scientists are kidnapped by the same men, this time dressed as British soldiers, almost to ignite a war between Germany and Britain. Because of this, Britain and Germany are to declare war. An emissary to the British government named Sanderson Reed(Tom Goodman-Hill) arrives in a club in British East Africa to recruit a legendary, but aged hunter and adventurer named Allan Quartermain(Sean Connery) to investigate.
-Because of his past adventures and the fact it cost the lives of many friends and loved ones, 2 wives and the son he had die in his arms, Quartermain's enthusiasm for the British Empire and European wars has disappeared. He hardly utters 2 words when men with automatic rifles burst into the club and attempt to kill Quartermain. The rifles cause great shock, as nobody had yet invented a machine gun which was small and light like a rifle. The club is pulverized and Sanderson points this out as the start of a war which threatens his beloved Africa. Quartermain agrees to investigate.
-After arriving in London, Quartermain meets the mysterious "M"(Richard Roxburgh), who explains everything, his plan to assemble a modern version of a group of talented individuals known as the "League of Extraordiary Gentlemen". These individuals aid the world in times of need. This time, they combat a figure known as Fathom, the mastermind behind this. M says they can ensure world peace by stopping Fathom from destroying Venice during Carnavale. Quartermain is then introduced to:
1. Captain Nemo
  -An Indian pirate and technology genius. He commands the world's only submarine, which he calls The Nautilus, with the narrator in Moby Dick, Ishmael, as his first mate
2. Rodney Skinner, aka The Invisible Man.
  -Works for the government in hope of finding an antidote for the invisibility serum he stole and drank from the creator
3. Mina Harker
  -Well regarded chemist and widow of Jonathan Harker, who is later said to be a vampire with connections to Count Dracula; she is immortal, strong, can fly and transform into/summon up a swarm of bats
-Next the group visits the mysterious Dorian Gray(Stuart Townshend), the Fathom and his men attack. The League fend off the attacks and later find out one of the "men" was an American Secret Service agent named Tom Sawyer(Shane West). He says the US government sent him to investigate, knowing the war in Europe might spread to America. The League lets in Sawyer and they go to Paris to capture Dr. Henry Jekyll(Jason Flemyng); his evil side, a misshapen giant, is found terrorizing the streets of Paris and the Rue Morgue. He is hunted down and captured by Quartermain and Sawyer before Jeykll offers his services to atone for his sins as Hyde in London
-With the League now complete, they take off on The Nautilus for Venice. Carnavale is in high gear when they arrive and they discover that there are bombs hidden underwater underneath the main plaza where Carnavale is happening. They soon suspect there is a traitor around when flash powder from a camera is found in the wheelhouse, and a vial of Jekyll's serum is missing. All think Skinner is the culprit, being invisible, but Skinner can't be found anywhere. At the same time, Jekyll has trouble controlling the urge to transform as he is seeing reflections of Hyde, who wants freedom
-Though the League reaches Venice, they find bombs planted under the main plaza where Carnavale is in high gear. These bombs detonate, toppling buildings like dominoes and making the League think that Skinner sold them out. The League decides to knock one of the buildings out of sequence to stop the collapse. Nemo has a missile that can be fired from the Nautilus at the suspected building, but only if a beacon can be set in place. Since Nemo can track the "car" Sawyer drives around, he uses that as a beacon, driving past explosions, as Dorian Gray and Mina Harker fight the Fathom's men. Quartermain, elsewhere, sees the Fathom and gives chase. During the chase, the mask comes off and Fathom is revealed to be M, who escapes. At the same time, Sawyer crashes the car into the building and fires a flare, signaling to Nemo it's go time. With the building destroyed, the explosions stop and Venice is saved.
-The League meets up at the Nautilus, where Quartermain reveals that Fathom is M, and he's responsible for the chain of events. Ishmael reveals that Gray, not Skinner, is the real traitor, as he was shot by Gray after the explosions. Gray escapes in an exploration pod(a mini sub) and Nemo sets the Nautilus in chase mode. A phonograph record made by M and Gray is found, saying that the objective to destroy Venice was merely a ruse to enable elements from the supernatural members of the League to be stolen:
  1. Mina's vampire blood: Gray obtained it after Mina cut herself while having a drink with him
  2. Skinner's invisibility serum: Gray got by scratching him during the capture of Hyde
  3. Jekyll's potion: Gray got by stealing one of the vials
  4. Nemo's technology specs: Gray took photos of, explaining the flash powder on the floor
-M reveals that Quartermain was only used to capture Hyde, before revealing his plan to construct an army of soldiers and weapons based on the powers stolen; M's goal is to gain wealth by starting war and selling arms to fighting countries. As the record plays, it releases a sonic signal caused by crystal sensors, setting off 3 bombs set by Gray before leaving. Despite Nemo's efforts, the Nautilus is taking in too much water and is sinking. Dr. Jekyll transforms in Mr. Hyde and this time, gains control of himself and prevents the ship from sinking by pulling a lever in one of the engine rooms, allowing the water to drain from the engine room, saving all the men in there from drowning.
-The Nautilus survived the bombings, and now the League has lost track of Gray. Luckily they receive a radio signal from Skinner, who had stowed away on the pod Gray stole. After fixing the damage and using Skinner's directions, they go to the Asiatic Artic, where the League finds a cave overlooking an industrial factory. Skinner appears and tells them that M is making weapons and armies in the factory, his munitions factory. Among the weapons are samples of invisible skin for spies, synthesized vampiric blood for assassins, doses of the Hyde potion for soldiers, and new subs based on Nemo's designs. Skinner reveals that M has been forcing German scientists to work on the weapons, as he has been holding the scientist's families hostage as leverage. Splitting up, the League infiltrate the factory: Nemo and Hyde free the scientists and their families; Sawyer and Quartermain go after M; Skinner goes off to plant explosives; Mina searches for her former lover Gray.

-While Nemo's men lead the scientists and family to safety, Nemo and Hyde run into M's second in command Dante(Max Ryan), who drinks too much of the Hyde potion and turns into a very large, gigantic monster version of Hyde to fight back, shocking Nemo and Jekyll. Mina fights with Gray, both of whom are immortal, until she pins him in a corner and forces him to look at a picture of himself. Because he made a deal with the Devil, that he could remain immortal as long as he did not set eyes upon his photo. She makes him look at his photo, which is rotten and decaying, but when he looks, the photo starts looking younger and he ages quickly and dies, turning to dust as the photo returns to it's handsome self. Quartermain and Sawyer confront M in his lair and reveal their suspicion that M is none other than the infamous "Napoleon of Crime", Professor James Moriarty. Now, if you have ever read the Sherlock Holmes stories, you'll know that Professor James Moriarty was the arch nemesis of Sherlock Holmes. This movie is filled with all kinds of literary characters.
-As Skinner's bombs detonate, Nemo and Jekyll escape the fortress through a small hole blasted through the wall, while Dante is crushed to death by falling stones. Quartermain and Sawyer chase Moriarty around the factory, and Sawyer is attacked by an invisible Reed and a flamethrower. Skinner saves Sawyer by setting the flamethrower's gas supply on fire but is badly burned, but survives. Despite his efforts, Sawyer is held hostage by Reed. Elsewhere, Quartermain is about to kill Moriarty, he sees Sawyer being held at knifepoint by Reed and chooses to save Sawyer than kill Moriarty. This comes at the cost of being stabbed in the back by Moriarty and Sawyer shooting Reed dead. Meanwhile Moriarty, is fleeing across the ice to a trapped sub, and Sawyer goes to Quartermain and takes his rifle, "Mathilda" and uses it and the marksmanship skills he was taught earlier, shooting Moriarty in the back, causing him to drop a box containing the weapons into the icy water, lost forever. As Quartermain dies, he tells Sawyer that the new century belongs to him "as the old one was mine"
-The surviving League members group together in Africa to bury Quartermain, next to his son, deciding to remain together as Nemo invites the League to join him as he sees the world as the century turns after hiding from it for so long. As they depart, a local tribal witch doctor(Semere-Ab Etmet Yohannes) takes handfuls of dirt from the grave and does a ritual chant. This chant basically lets Quartermain's saying at the beginning of the movie come true: that Africa would not let Quartermain die. As the doctor chants, the earth shakes, making the rifle left by Sawyer shake. Lightning strikes the rifle and Quartermain's grave and the screen goes black

  • Sean Connery as Allan Quartermain
  • Naseeruddin Shah as Captain Nemo
  • Peta Wilson as Mina Harker
  • Tony Curran as Rodney Skinner
  • Stuart Townsend as Dorian Gray
  • Shane West as Tom Sawyer
  • Jason Flemyng as Dr. Henry Jekyll / Edward Hyde
  • Richard Roxburgh as The Fantom / "M" / Professor James Moriarty
  • 1 comment:

    1. Now I am not the only person that likes the movie. :D The action is great and I love the cast of characters!