And Eli said, 'that’s not a knife!'
The Book of Eli
Starring Denzel Washington, Gary Oldman, Mila Kunis, Jennifer Beals, Tom Waits, Michael Gambon, Malcolm McDowell
Here are just a few select verses from The Book of Eli that will help wayward flocks of moviegoers as they genuflect on their multiplex choices:
2 Brothers 1:1
In the beginning was the apocalypse, and the apocalypse was grey and gritty, but Denzel is a superhuman god.
2 Hughes 1:10
Then we said, “Let us make a near future where the end is mysteriously unclear but suggests some fiery cataclysm that has consumed all the flora of the earth and mysteriously left only a few birds in the sky and precious few wild animals, such as cats, and other creatures like cockroaches and rodentia that move along the ground and that Denzel can, with cunning, capture and cook.”
2 Brothers 4:19
Our scripture is breathed by the essence of Mad Max, The Road Warrior and Clint Eastwood “spaghetti westerns as these are useful for teaching, evoking, and emulating the righteousness of bad-ass filmmaking where all is dark, bleak and hopeless so that a solitary, stoic and stalwart deliverer can then whoop-ass gospel on the evildoers in the absence of civilized society and its consequences and encumbrances.
2 Hughes 3:23
For the Hughes Brothers so loved super-violent action, but also gravitas, that they gave us their one and only superstar Denzel, that whoever believes in the things that Denzel does in this film — like lay waste to hordes of men with weapons — shall not be disappointed but shall have eternal mindlessness.
And Denzel answered: “I am the way and the greatness and the solitary savior. No one comes to me to take away my mysterious book from me except through me having chopped their head off so that blood can spurt from their lifeless trunk in graphic silhouette.”
Therefore go and make disciples of all people, baptizing them in their own blood, but not those people who could actually benefit from my teachings — you know, the ones that are waywardly imprisoned by an evil madman for they are unfortunately with the madman and I and my holy spirit cannot help them only so that more blood can be spilled.
If you, my woman captive, declare with your mouth, “Denzel is godlike,” and believe in your heart that he can vanquish me, then I will pull on your hair until you succumb and provide the information that I need to seek his whereabouts and take his mysterious book — which is his power — from him.
For all who are not me, including my henchmen, have sinned and are worthy of my derision and contempt so that I can order them to fling themselves at Denzel so that they can be dismembered by him one-by-one and so that they can turn on me when my powers have ebbed and abated.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of my mercy, to offer up your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to me — this is the true way for me to show how ruthless I am and how mindlessly subservient all of you are.
And in a time of acute want, there will be plenty of ammo and gasoline and energy, its bounty a result of divine provenance somehow.
“Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to your destitute town. I did not come to bring peace, but a knife, and what a huge knife it is!”
As ordered by Oldman being a member of his clan, I preparest a table for Denzel in the presence of his enemies and I offered up my body, but he asked for water instead, it being precious and scarce, but when I filled his cup with it, his cup runneth over as the filler oddly did not seem to care about wasting this precious giver of life.
My sheep does not listen to my voice; I know her, her name being Kunis, and she follows me when I tell her not to so that she can be redeemed and so that she can redeem me, like all good faith-based apocalypse solitary road warrior moving images.
Denzel left that place of Oldman, mysteriously escaping his imprisonment and avoiding a barrage of bullets, and went to the desert. He entered Gambon’s house and did not want anyone to know it; yet he could not keep his presence a secret, not even from Oldman, who arrived and peppered the house with a hail of stones.
Let he who is without sin by swearing off the consumption of human flesh, and thus whose hands do not shake as those who have partaken oddly do somehow, dispatch a man who stands and screams in front of the window of his house that is being stoned by bullets so that he can be sent to kingdom come.
The thief Oldman comes to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that I may have life, and have it to the full, even when I am shot in the stomach with no one to anoint my sores and administer healing powers.
If you say, after obtaining the object of which you seek, “But we knew nothing of this,” does not he who receives the item after much suffering not actually perceive it? Does not he who guards it with his life not wish to give it up so easily? Will he not repay you according to what you have done? Why did you not inspect the item in the presence of the one who kept it from you for so long to ensure it was what you sought?
Denzel replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the things that I cannot see in this movie without suspending disbelief, and when the truth is revealed at the ending time of atonement, all that has come before will be unbelievable to those who are blind and do not believe in me and my movie.”
Doug Young is The Statesman’s outstanding film critic. He works for U.S. Sen. Mark Udall as an environmental policy advisor.