VOTE FOR THE BEST OF ORLANDO® 2021 NOW THROUGH AUG. 1!

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Movie: The Reckoning

Posted on Thu, Mar 25, 2004 at 4:00 AM

**1/2
The Reckoning
Studio: Paramount Classics
Website: http://www.paramountclassics.com/reckoning
Release Date: 2004-03-26
Cast: Paul Bettany, Willem Dafoe, Ewen Bremner, Vincent Cassel, Brian Cox
Director: Paul McGuigan
WorkNameSort: The Reckoning
Our Rating: 2.50

Paul Bettany, Willem Dafoe, Brian Cox ... what are they doing in this thing? Having a good time dressing like waiters at Medieval Times and not taking any of it too seriously, one hopes. Bettany's a disgraced 1300s priest on the run from his flock after a fleshy indiscretion (and a "mysterious" ancillary crime you'll guess straight away). The rueful rev hooks up with a touring drama group, and together they turn a middling trade in Gospel-based theatricals -- until they visit a village still reeling from a shocking murder, and hit upon the idea of making the crime the subject of their next al fresco performance piece.

Strangely, this tasteless move does not get them flogged silly, but it does inspire plenty of impassioned kibitzing from the citizenry over what really happened. The story that ensues is basically a period CSI, with the engaged drama troupe sifting through forensic evidence and eyewitness testimony in hopes of solving the crime, rather than just exploiting it.

On the plus side, the movie looks just great, reeking with carefully applied filth that makes us deeply grateful to be living in the 21st century. As a negative, the flick seems constitutionally able to keep its pretty mouth shut, weighing down its effective visual setups with interminable philosophical debates. Dafoe's group leader has a hilariously overreaching speech in which he announces their transition to reality-based drama; one day, he fearlessly predicts, every play will be drawn from life instead of scripture. All that's missing is the voice of Don Pardo instructing us to tune in for next week's episode of Theodoric of York, Medieval Thespian.

Tags:

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at feedback@orlandoweekly.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Read the Digital Print Issue

June 16, 2021

Calendar

© 2021 Orlando Weekly

Website powered by Foundation