The Great Wall was always going to face an uphill task in trying to impress me, mainly due to the fact that the trailers didn't really do a good job at all of making the film look any good. That and the fact that more people seem to be wrongly accusing the film of whitewashing than actually watching the film itself ultimately led to one of the most disappointing trips to the cinema I've had so far this year.

When European mercenaries, William Garin (Matt Damon) and Pero Tovar (Pedro Pascal), are captured at the Great Wall of China during their search for black powder, they become embroiled in the defence of the Wall against a horde of monstrous creatures.
I wanted The Great Wall to be an enjoyable film but it just isn't. Save for some pretty cool action when the creatures first attack the wall, which is pretty insane, there isn't really much to shout home about at all. The film's main problem is that it's unbelievably dull for film with such a ridiculous plot.

The film takes itself way too seriously which sucks the fun right out of proceedings, and the action sequences just become all too similar by the time the underwhelming finale comes around. The drab screenplay doesn't really help matters too much either.

A lot has been made of the casting of Matt Damon in The Great Wall but all it is a Chinese studio casting a big Hollywood star in an attempt to bring in more at the box-office. People who claim this film is whitewashing need to actually watch the film and will then realise Damon's character is in fact European and not Chinese. Damon, Pedro Pascal and Tian Jing are the saving graces of this film as they surprisingly look as if they want to try and make the script they've been given work.

The Great Wall loses a lot of credit for deciding not to fully embrace the absurdity and take a much more serious approach for me. It feels like a forgettable February release that I certainly won't want to remember in any shape or form.

Verdict: ★★


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