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V For Vendetta

Title: V For Vendetta

Director: James McTeigue

Stars: Natalie Portman ; Hugo Weaving ; Stephen Rea

Reviewer: Matt Eccles

Rating (out of 10): 7


Andy & Larry Wachowski’s elevation to the stratosphere with The Matrix (1999) may have been so dizzying that they could be forgiven for pretty much botching the two sequels, particularly as so much was expected of them after raising the sci-fi action movie bar so high. A shrewd move, then, that in the three years since Reloaded and Revolutions (both 2003) they carefully honed their adaptation of Alan Moore’s widely-admired comic book into a concise, coherent script and promoted The Matrix’s (and Star Wars Episode II’s) assistant director James McTeigue to the main helmer’s chair.

Another familiar name here - if not face, as it is never revealed - is Hugo Weaving as the anti-hero V, a formidable, Shakespeare-quoting freedom fighter in a Guy Fawkes mask who terrorizes a near-future British dictatorship lead by Chancellor Adam Sutler (John Hurt). V saves and finds an ally in Evey Hammond (played with a faltering accent by Natalie Portman), while he plots the downfall of the Government who have made him their most wanted.

Despite Moore disowning film adaptations of his stories (often with good reason), V For Vendetta is surely worthy of his praise, as the Wachowski’s intelligent, punchy script, Weaving’s voice talent and McTeigue’s solid direction make for a dark, intriguing sci-fi. It is assumed, though, that the talented but mercurial sibling duo are well aware that V For Vendetta shouldn’t be sullied with any unnecessary sequels.

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