In Bush League with Fictional Heroes

 ImageShane West and Sean Connery


We saw an Internet trifle that dismissed League of Extraordinary Gentlemen as one of the worst films in recent memory—and the movie that sent Sean Connery’s career into the downspout.

Our first reaction was, “Come again?” Then we decided we needed to see for ourselves.

The conceit for this movie endeared old English majors: the great fictional characters of the 19th century literature gather together as a band of superheroes of yesteryear. We’re game for any travesty that entertains.

And, since this screenplay is based on a graphic novel (better identified as a comic book), you can forget any notion of literary merit. The characters are shadows that not even Cliff’s Notes would recognize.

Dr. Jekyll’s alter ego is the Incredible Hulk, and Dracula’s girlfriend is Mina Harker. Dorian Gray is slightly prissy, and someone has stolen the Invisible Man’s serum. The token American is Tom Sawyer, looking 22 in 1899, making him another Dorian Gray.

Sean Connery seems a little long in the tooth for these stunts, but he looks marvelous in his wink and nod meeting with ‘M’ of the British secret service.

Put aside wit and cleverness in lieu of needless overkill and loud noise.

This is not the worst movie of the decade, merely representative of its ilk: watering down dialogue in favor of violence and twisting quality into the pretzel of popular epic.

This film did not inspire sequels with Sherlock Holmes, Natty Bumppo, and Dr. Frankenstein, other notable 19th century folk characters that were missing from this tale full of sound and fury.

It was no better than most, and no worse for the viewing as a Victorian version of X-Men or Mission Impossible’s team.

For more movies mashed up, try William Russo’s books TO SEE OR NOT TO SEE and/or MOVIE MASHUP! Both are available on

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