After the end of their “Matrix” trilogy, the Wachowski siblings brought us the next gloomy vision of the future with “V for Vendetta”, which is still an absolute highlight among comic adaptations for FILMSTARTS editor Markus.
Around two years before “Iron Man” marked the starting signal for the mega-successful Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), which now dominates a large part of the comic film world, the “Matrix” masterminds Lilly and Lana Wachowski created a graphic Novel adaptation (based on a template by “Watchman” creator Alan Moore) that worked completely independently of the well-known Marvel and DC cosms (even if the template appeared at least under the DC label Vertigo).
In the FILMSTARTS review it was only enough for 3 out of 5 stars, but over the years “V for Vendetta” has achieved almost cult status among a loyal crowd of fans. The author of these lines has always been one of the ardent admirers of the film and can therefore highly recommend tuning in when “V wie Vendetta” is on today, April 6, 2022 at 11:20 p.m. on Kabel 1.
Alternatively, you can of course also use Blu-ray, DVD or VoD to watch the dystopian action drama over and over again without commercial breaks. Unfortunately, it is currently not included in a streaming subscription.
» “V for Vendetta” on Blu-ray & DVD at Amazon*
» “V for Vendetta” as VoD on Amazon*
That’s what “V for Vendetta” is about
In an alternate future not too distant, the world is mostly in shambles after global wars, acts of terrorism, and pandemics. In Britain, amid all the turmoil, a fascist government has come to power, oppressing the populace and fiercely persecuting those who think differently.
One evening, young Evey (Natalie Portman) is also in danger of becoming a victim of the British secret police when she is still out on the streets after the strict curfew. However, the masked V (Hugo Weaving) rushes to her aid. He has made it his mission to bring down the totalitarian regime at any cost and seems to have found a new ally in Evey. But the sometimes extreme methods of the freedom fighter soon raise doubts in her…
Action bombast meets oppressive dystopia
+++ Opinion +++
It takes the Wachowski siblings, who wrote and produced V for Vendetta, moments to bring alternative Britain to oppressive life. Danger lurks around every corner here, but with the titular antihero V, he has an adversary who is as determined as he is brutal, who proves right from his great introduction that he can dish out fists (and knives) just as well as words.
Even if V is ultimately celebrated a little too clearly as a heroic figure, given the questionable methods with which he wants to achieve his noble goals, there are now and again exciting ambivalent breaks in which some complex fundamental questions are raised. Especially in the discussions between V and Evey, it’s always about how far you can go to take action against injustice. As the real heart of the film, the later Oscar winner Natalie Portman makes Evey’s change from victim to fearless fighter tangible every second.
“V for Vendetta” is also well cast, even in the supporting roles, for example with Stephen Fry as a television presenter critical of the regime or John Hurt, who, after fighting himself against a surveillance state in the cult classic “1984”, is shown here as a fascist-like chancellor on the other side of the system.
The gloomy dystopian setting goes hand in hand with the well-dosed and brilliant action. Although the Wachowskis left directing to their protégé James McTeigue, the action scenes are clearly inspired by their “Matrix” trilogy, but can also stand on their own in their original, exaggerated (and gory) playfulness (“Matrix 4” could in this respect you can definitely cut a thick slice of it). Those same sequences are ultimately the icing on the cake intense roller coaster ride that won’t let you go until the explosive and extremely consistent showdown.
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