In theaters now is the latest video game turned motion picture Assassin’s Creed starring Irish-German superstar Michael Fassbender. Rotten Tomatoes tabulated a 19% score with critics, but 66% with audiences. I’ve seen it and I lean towards the audiences.
As in the game, the main character’s DNA is hacked to transport them to their ancestor’s memory to an historic city and time. The movie and the game combines my favorite things — travel, history, an open world to explore and doing something by yourself.
The games take place in cities you can visit where you can wonder what it would be like to climb historic sites and then kill somebody from afar. Cities like Renaissance Florence, Rome, Constantinople, Paris, colonial Boston and New York and, the most recent game, Victorian London.
Rather than redo a storyline from the movie, the film makers created their own by setting the past story in the Spanish Inquisition of Andalusia, circa 1492. You can guess what historic figure makes a cameo, which is customary in the game.
While some of the set pieces where filmed in Spain, Valletta, Malta stands in the for the intense city chase scenes that showcases the franchise’s parkour and hand-to-hand combat. The city has also been used in films like Munich, Midnight Express and World War Z.
There’s a scene set in Sevilla’s Cathedral, but anybody who’s been there can tell you that it wasn’t filmed there. That would be a tall order to shut down the city’s most popular attraction for filming a movie based on a video. It looks like CGI took care of the set design.
Since the movie hasn’t done well at the box office, a second installment doesn’t seem like a possibility. We’ll just have to wait until the next video game release to see where it will take the gamer next.