“The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” Starring Sean Connery (2003) / Z-View

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)

Director: Stephen Norrington

Screenplay by:  James Dale Robinson based on The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen comic books by Alan Moore, Kevin O’Neill

Starring:  Sean Connery, Stuart Townsend, Peta Wilson, Jason Flemyng, Naseeruddin Shah, Tony Curran, Shane West  and Richard Roxburgh

Tagline: The power of seven become a league of one

The Overview:  Beware of spoilers

It’s 1899.  A man who calls himself the Fantom leads an army of terrorists who strike without pity and leave clues implicating foreign countries.  The Fantom’s goal is to create a world war from which he will profit.

In an effort to bring down the Fantom a group of “extraordinary gentlemen” are recruited by “M” (Roxburgh):

  • Allan Quatermain (Connery) the famous hunter/tracker
  • Captain Nemo (Shah) the famous scientist/adventurer
  • Mina Harker (Wilson) who has vampire-like abilities
  • Dr. Henry Jekyll (Flemyng) who becomes the raging Mr. Hyde
  • Rodney Skinner (Curran), a thief who stole a formula that makes him invisible
  • Dorian Gray (Townsend) who appears to be immortal and
  • Tom Sawyer (West) who is a special agent from the United States

The “extraordinary gentlemen” make a formidable team, but there is a traitor among them…

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen gets a bad rap with some folks.  Perhaps some of that was caused by the tension on the set between director Stephen Norrington and Sean Connery.  Neither man enjoyed working with the other.  Sadly, it was Connery’s last live action film.  Some say the experience on The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen led to his retirement.  Surprisingly, it was also Norrington’s last film as well.

There are another group of fans who loved the comics by Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill and were disappointed with things the film changed.  Since I’ve never read the comics (and I do need to fix that!), I went into the movie with no preconceived thoughts.

As for the movie, I enjoyed it.  What’s not to love?  You have famous characters from different stories teaming up against a larger than life menace to the world!  The introductory scenes of each character is where the movie really shines.  We quickly learn who each person is and then we’re off on the adventure.  I would have loved this film even more if I was a kid… but there’s still enough of a kid in me to rate it 4 of 5 stars.