Coming out at the end of the year will be Assassins Creed, the big screen adaptation of Ubisoft’s immense historical and scientific magnum opus set in the modern day and in past times, which have been rebuilt and
researched by large groups of historians and cultures of varying faiths and creeds.
The game tells us the story of bartender Desmond Miles who is kidnapped by an underground group known as Abstergo Industries who place him in a mnemonic recall machine known as the Animus and induce his mind to relive the experiences of his ancestors and find an artefact of undetermined power called the Apple of Eden.
The first ancestor he becomes is Altaïr Ibn-La’Ahad, an assassin in 1191, during the Third Crusade under the tutelage of Al Mualim of Masyaf. A failed mission at the Temple of Solomon has Altaïr stripped of his weapons and rank and made to earn the respect of peers again, which is how we learn his history and the true mission that lies ahead for both him and Desmond. We eventually discover that Abstergo are the modern Knights Templar and they are trying to acquire the Apple for world domination and using Desmond’s memories to obtain it. This leads us and Desmond to experience the memories of other ancestors, most notably Ezio Auditore da Firenze!
The game has spawned several sequels, comic books, short movies, an animated movie, merchandise, legions of cosplayers, and now a movie adaptation starring Michael Fassbender as a new protagonist.
Here Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds, Shame) portrays Callum Lynch, who enters the Animus project (in a similar way to the game to absorb the memories and experiences of his ancestor Aguilar during the Spanish Inquisition.
A large number of details about the movie remain undisclosed but what we see here is the Animus, which appears to be more of a harness (but we’ll have to wait to see more of that), the iconic symbol, stunning cinematography of 15th century Spain (sadly CG as we haven’t fully developed time travel yet), wild and coordinated fighting scenes, lots of Parkour, the ubiquitous eagle and of course the free-falling drop from great heights. Plenty of elements from the game that should keep fans happy and satisfied, at least until the film is released.
While his outfit may not look like much it’s the performance which will count to whether they’ve developed the character right. The more I see and know of the movie the faith I have in it being a fun movie.
The major misgiving of this trailer is the awful music used for it. It’s a din of caterwauling from inhuman pratling Kanye West warbling on about his faith or him being a deity. We don’t know. We don’t care. All we ask is that it won’t be used for the movie or anything of that style or genre. Stick to the aesthetic of the time and fans will appreciate it more.
Will this movie mark one of the rare times when a game adaptation to film is actually any good? I guess we’ll just have to see this Christmas when it comes out.
Director: Justin Kurzel
Writers: Bill Collage, Adam Cooper
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Marion Cotillard, Jeremy Irons, Brendan Gleeson, Michael Kenneth Williams, Ariane Labed
Released: December 30th 2016