Mutant Chronicles Review
Written by: jmh314
Let me start this review off with a warning for everyone reading it. This review is for the UK version of Mutant Chronicles. Why is that important? Well after speaking with Director Simon Hunter at Fango LA, it became apparent that the US cut is the definitive version. He is calling it the Directors cut and says it is a much better version because originally he was rushed to get the first cut done and wasnt happy with all the choices made. Even when I went to have him sign my copy of the UK DVD he told me see the US version instead. With that said, even though this is the UK cut of the film which is supposedly not nearly as good, I still enjoyed the hell out of it.
Mutant Chronicles story revolves around war in the year 2707. Countries no longer exist as the world is ruled by 4 corporations instead. These corporations are at war with each other but soon will be forced to be allies. During one battle, a sealed off machine gets reopened. This machine turns to dead and wounded into a mutant army hellbent on destroying mankind. A secret Brotherhood has protected the origins of this machine and the mutants for thousands of years. Their leader, Brother Samuel must now obey the prophecy they follow and destroy the mutant machine and save humanity. In order to do so he must form a team of soldiers from all four companies who must put their difference aside and fight for the fate of mankind.
Mutant Chronicles is first and foremost a war movie but its really the most interesting war movie I have ever seen in regards to the story being mutants vs humans and not just humans vs humans. Being a war movie that doesnt mean there isnt things there for horror fans to enjoy. The mutants in the film are pretty interesting looking and they do create a lot of carnage. They are brutal in their ways of killing and will stop at nothing to destroy humans and erase mankind.
The story itself follows a lot of religious type angles as the secret Brotherhood has known about it and follows an ancient book they call the Mutant Chronicles telling of the mutant machines stories and how to stop it. Ron Perlman was Brother Samuel and he plays a very interesting role being both a man of the cloth and a warrior. Anna Walton plays the other main member of the brotherhood as Severian, the silent protector of the Chronicles. Even though her character is silent throughout most of the movie she really develops into a bad ass.
There are several other characters outside of the Brotherhood that were interesting. Thomas Jane as the hardened war Veteran Major Mitch Hunter. He is tough as nails and really doesnt care what people think. He gets so good one liners and is really a cool character for a war movie. I also enjoyed Devon Aoki as Cpl. Duval and the small role of John Malkovich as Constantine, the leader of the Company Collective.
The visuals in this film are what makes this film so enjoyable. The entire movie is done in front of a green screen, so it has that comic book feel like films Sin Cit, 300, or even Gabriel had. There are a few parts that I thought looked quite amazing and never really got distracted by the green screen style. The gore is CGI as a result and sometimes looks great and others not so much but I think it lends to that comic-style futuristic quality that the film was going for with the visuals.
Mutant Chronicles I just felt was a fun ride. There were a few slow points but the intriguing story, interesting characters, and offbeat visuals are what makes this film a success. I am really intrigued to see the Directors Cut that is being released in the US to see how much different it makes the film. If Director Simon Hunter's enthusiasm for the new cut is any indication then it could be one helluva ride. As it stands with the version I saw, Mutant Chronicles is a furious war/horror film filled with high-energy entertainment and spectacular visuals. It was the most fun I have had with a war movie in a long time and I really look forward to seeing the Director's Cut.