Have you seen this trailer? My, it is so full of cliches and tired tropes I think it could collapse under its own weight. No doubt the studio thought the same thing, hence the February release date. And why is it no one can make a decent epic fantasy film? Oh sure, we have the Hobbit films but that’s the exception, not the rule. The rule is these tepid rehashes of genre cliches that were getting worn out in the 70s.
I think the last thing that showed a little spirit and potential was Snow White & the Huntsman. If anything, if suffered from overreach and ambition but that’s not a bad thing. Kristen Stewart appeared more engaged than she did in that Twilight series so there’s something as well. And there was an honest attempt to create a world.
Seventh Son however looks to be a SyFy channel movie with a bigger budget and a couple A-list actors who were slumming in order to buy a new cabin in the Montana Rockies. It still looks like fantasy-by-numbers, not an inspired take on an established genre. I suspect that the studios are scared of the genre. If you’re basing a movie or a franchise on a fantasy series you have to hit it just right with a fickle fanbase or you’re going to alienate your base right off the bat. It’s much easier to just stir in some themes the audience has seen a thousand times and hope that they don’t stay home watching LOTR agan and again. Hollywood has become so risk averse over the last couple decades, more dependent on franchises and sequels, films where the roll of the dice can be calculated down to the penny.
Lana and Andy Wachowski are not risk averse. They’re perfectly willing to double down on the crazy (the Matrix sequels prove that) and take a chance on something original. There’s every indication that this could be a mess as well. Release dates early in the year rarely lie. But at least it takes a chance and that’s worth something. So if I’m going to see anything in the month of February let it be something that goes for broke, not one that plays it safe.