V for Vendetta is a 2006 dystopian political action film directed by James McTeigue and written by the Wachowskis based on the 1988 DC/Vertigo Comics limited series of the same name by Alan Moore and David Lloyd.

Alan Moore

Set in an alternative future where a Nordic supremacist and neo-fascist totalitarian regime has subjugated the United Kingdom, the film centers on V (portrayed by Hugo Weaving), an anarchist and masked freedom fighter who attempts to ignite a revolution through elaborate terrorist acts, while Natalie Portman plays Evey, a young, working-class woman caught up in V’s mission and Stephen Rea portrays a detective leading a desperate quest to stop V.

An interesting film, especially given it’s focus on events surrounding Nov 5 (Guy Fawkes night). It’s all about order vs chaos and the oppressive nature of absolute power.

Listening to an explanation of the source material, it’s clear they went for a Hollywood ending. But the graphic novel is more subtle. Both V and the Chancellor are similar characters. Both egotistical and bent of sublimating all around them to their will. There is part of the movie where Evey is tortured where that is apparent, but mainly V is portrayed as a heroic character, despite his violence.

And John Hurt as Adam Sutler, the Chancellor is played as a one dimensional bad guy.

The only really sympathetic character is Stephen Rea as Finch the Chief inspector of New Scotland Yard. During his investigation he uncovers government crime and begins to understand V’s motivations. In the end it’s him that partially instigates the ending of the regime.

Stephen Rea as Finch

While the book leave the future unknown, the film brings everything to a neat resolution.

This is a film where the more you examine the plot, the less plausible is becomes. However watching it is an engaging story. An Natalie Portman, while suited to the role doesn’t have much to do but act as an innocent bystander.