Assassin's Creed

Out Now On-Demand

Welcome to the Spanish Inquisition.

Action-adventure based on the video game series starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard, directed by their Macbeth helmer Justin Kurzel.

Through revolutionary genetic technologies that allow him to unlock the memories of his ancestors, Lynch (Fassbender) discovers he is a descendant of the secret Assassins society. These memories allow him to relive the adventures of his ancestor, Aguilar, in 15th Century Spain, and equip him with the knowledge and skills necessary to take on the oppressive Knights Templar in the present day.

A great videogame-to-film adaptation will happen in my lifetime, and I will be there when it happens. There will be confetti. There will be cheers. I will probably sob a little. But over this past year, there was no celebration for Duncan Jones’ Warcraft, Rovio’s Angry Birds or Michael Fassbender’s Assassin’s Creed.

Director Justin Kurzel follows up his excellent 2015 take on Macbeth with an equally serious treatment of a story about a guy who is placed in a machine called the Animus that uses “DNA memory” to revisit his assassin ancestry in the hopes of finding a magic apple that could enslave the human race. Yes, it’s as silly as it sounds, but you’ve got to admire Kurzel for taking this spaghetti splat plot as seriously as Ubisoft did.

Doing so means the story has to have empathetic or sympathetic characters – preferably both. But it’s damn hard to connect with Michael Fassbender’s lead, a man who we see on Death Row for the murder of a pimp that we’re meant to be totally cool with. You feel a little more for Marion Cotillard, a scientist looking to make her mark but questioning the methods. This, however, goes nowhere. Meanwhile, Jeremy Irons and Charlotte Rampling show up to sound sinister while refusing to move a facial muscle. At least Brendan Gleeson’s character has a reason to be numb for both his scenes.

The assassination flashbacks could have been something to make the drollness all worthwhile, and you can recognise how hard the stunt choreographers worked to make these scenes unique and exciting. But too many frustrating filmmaking choices turn the coordinated action into a blur – it’s only a few quick cuts and a camera shake shy from being Taken 3.

At least the panning shots look nice.

Empire (UK)


Often confusing and far too po-faced, Kurzel’s stabby period piece is redeemed by its sumptuous vistas and top-notch fight work.

Time Out London


Takes itself too seriously – but manages to serve up a convincing enough alternate reality.

Total Film (UK)


Valiant, but flawed. Some of the set-pieces are superb, but there isn’t enough meat on the bones to turn this into a classic.

Guardian (UK)


It’s rare to see a film quite so lacking in animus. It exists only to gouge money out of gamers. They might well want to stick to the game.

Telegraph (UK)


Assassin’s Creed is leaps and bounds ahead of kitchen-sink-hurling flapdoodle like X-Men Apocalypse – it’s only the second-worst Fassbender star vehicle of 2016...

Variety (USA)


It's got classier stars, but it's really the same old sludge.

FilmInk (Australia)

press exercise in joyless frowning and desperately unconvincing drama.

New York Times


For an ostensible action movie, the cast spends an awful lot of time standing around and looking lost. I can only guess that they were following their director's lead.

Worst film of the year

Purging violence by using a whole lot of violence? The story itself makes no sense and add to that characters you don't care about, scenes upon scenes of boring dialogue and an overall darkness to the film as a whole, Assassin's Creed is easily the worst film of this whole year. That one parkour scene was pretty dope though.

Not a Gamer

Im not a gamer but I enjoyed this movie, good actors and storyline.. it may lead to a sequel