Dystopian futures have always interested me. There is always someone or something that happened that forced the world into such a dark place. I find that alluring and interesting.
The future that we get in V for Vendetta has a corrupt Brittish government that rose to power after events they either caused or allowed to happen. The film also shows that this is a worldwide dystopian future with comments about a civil war in the United States, and with them being “the world’s biggest leper colony.” This world building makes me wonder what the larger world looks like and what happened to the Brittish Royal Family?
V for Vendetta stars Natalie Portman and Hugo Weaving in amazing performances. It also co-starred prominent Brittish actors Stephen Rea, John Hurt, and Stephen Fry. What is most amazing to me is the performance Hugo Weaving put in as V without ever showing his face. Natalie Portman also goes all in with her performance as Evey Hammond, going as far as shaving her head for half the film.
When we first meet V and Evey, we are shown them in a parallel that makes you realize immediately that these two are more alike than they will admit. The opening ends on a monologue by Weaving that sets a precedent for the amazing lines to come.
Speaking of a parallel between V and Evey their backstories are tragic circumstances from the corrupt government coming into power. Leading into a beautiful visualization of one being reborn or fire and the other water.
Released in 2005 and based on a graphic novel published by DC/Vertigo comics, there are some visuals that they take directly from the comics. But the ones that stick out to me the most are of the explosions of both the Old Bailey and the British parliament building. The inclusion of the Big Ben clock tower exploding with fireworks and the use of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture makes it exciting to watch.
There was one other stunning sequence that I loved. Just before the final act starts V is shown setting up some dominoes. When they finally fall it is an amazing look at the calm before the storm.
V for Vendetta is a violent film that definitely deserves the R rating that it received. It is not a film that I would recommend to anyone that can’t handle violence and blood or profanity. Personally, I enjoyed the world building and the characters within it. Add in the visuals and you have a film that I definitely will watch again.