I Watched This So You Don’t Have To – Seraphim Falls

Yes its true – I watched yet another film almost all the way through and am now giving you my honest and unexpurgated opinion in order that, well, you will have an opinion before you watch it, but if you want the Express Opinion, then don’t watch it, its rubbish.

Currently showing on PictureBox, that £5 a month bolt-on TV Deal so popular with BTVision and VirginMedia customers but usually the ones who can’t afford Sky Movies, you get seven new films a week, four weeks worth at a time for £5 a month but when they say “New” they really mean “New to Picturebox” for these are in the main the sort of films that Sky Movies showed yonks ago, or decided that they were too rubbish to show.

So, Seraphim Falls, the plot summary on IMDB says :-

In the 1860s, five men have been tracking a sixth across Nevada for more than two weeks. They shoot and wound him, but he gets away. They pursue, led by the dour Carver, who will pay them each $1 a day once he’s captured. The hunted is Gideon, resourceful, skilled with a knife. Gideon’s flight and Carver’s hunt require horses, water, and bullets. The course takes them past lone settlers, a wagon train, a rail crew, settlements, and an Indian philosopher. What is the reason for the hunt; what connects Gideon and Carver? What happened at Seraphim Falls?

Sounds good eh?

Thats what I thought and settled down to watch it on Sunday afternoon, then realised after fifteen minutes that I’d promised to put up a roller blind in one of the bedrooms so had to break for half an hour, then had a bite to eat, then watched a bit more, then realised that the wife was coming in from work any time now and I hadn’t cleaned the dog muck off the garden, so had to pause it again, clean the garden, clean my hands and settle down again – you don’t get this sort of detail in most film reviews do you, well in this film review you do for putting up a window blind and even picking dog poo up from the garden were both preferable past times to watching Seraphim Falls.

The scenery is spectacular, if you like snowy mountain scenes then you will love this film, if you love the American Plains and Deserts then you will love this film, if you love a film with a point to it or a film that doesn’t make you keep looking at your watch to see how long is left then this is probably not the film for you though.

The two leading roles are played by Pierce Brosnam and Liam Neeson and thats where I should have stopped and looked for another film, for I have never yet seen a Pierce Brosnam film that I like, just for the record I’d put his performance in this film just slightly behind his performance in “Mama Mia”, yes its that good but he doesn’t get to sing in Seraphim Falls for which we can all be eternally grateful.

The film plods on, once you get the idea that Liam Neeson is hunting Pierce Brosnam and Pierce Brosnam seems capable of constantly escaping Liam Neeson and his party of four even though Brosnan is on foot for most of the chase and his pursuers are on horseback but still can’t catch him up – once you have that idea in your head you know all there is to know, the film is going to string itself along from one bizarre scene to the next for 115 minutes until its completely ridiculous end, or you switch off, whichever comes first, and I confess, I paused with ten minutes to go and fast forwarded to see how it ended and was glad to save those ten minutes of my life.

I found myself looking at the time after about an hour and wishing that this was actually a TV show and something else would be on now and just when you think its all over another bizarre set of scenes come along where both actors are stuck in the desert in a sort of dream sequence when a woman in a travelling potion seller’s wagon appears and tries to sell them some constipation relief, I’m not making this bit up by the way, and yes, they both bought the lotion.

Its like the producer had brought along a truck load of film and thought that he’d shot nearly all of it after two weeks and an hours worth of storyline in the bag and then some production kid found a load more film hidden under some tarpaulins so they went away and wrote another 50 minutes worth just so that they didn’t have to get a refund on the unused film.

I’ll tell you how it ends because its not a spoiler, simply because I doubt that anyone has ever watched this film right to the end, you lose the will to live long before Brosnam and Neesom shake hands in the desert and walk off in separate directions only to suddenly disappear as if abducted by aliens – yes thats how it really ends.

Summary – I watched this so that you don’t have to, go do something else with your 115 minutes, I wasted mine


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