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The Book of Eli (2010)

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A post-apocalyptic tale, in which a lone man fights his way across America in order to protect a sacred book that holds the secrets to saving humankind.

Directors:

(as The Hughes Brothers), (as The Hughes Brothers)

Writer:

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937 ( 125)
3 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Eli
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...
...
...
...
...
...
Martha (as Frances De La Tour)
...
...
...
...
...
...
Hijacker (as Keith Davis)
...
Hijacker (as Don Theerathada)
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Storyline

In a violent post-apocalyptic society, a drifter, Eli, has been wandering westward across North America for the last thirty years. He finds solace in a unique book which he carries on his person and guards closely, whilst surviving by hunting small animals and seeking goods in destroyed houses and vehicles to trade in villages for water and supplies. When he reaches a village ruled by the powerful mobster, Carnegie, the man views Eli's impressive fighting skills and offers Eli a place within his gang. Carnegie presses his blind lover Claudia to send her daughter, Solara, to at least convince Eli to spend the night by sleeping with him. However, Eli proves to be the better man when he gently declines her advances. The girl sees Eli's book, and when Carnegie finds out he beats her mother until she reveals what she saw. Carnegie sends his gang into the wasteland to take the book from Eli, but the man proves to be a formidable foe as he makes it more than clear that if they want the book,... Written by Harry Jankel, London, England

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Some will kill to have it. He will kill to protect it. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some brutal violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 January 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El libro de los secretos  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$80,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$38,437,553, 17 January 2010, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$94,835,059

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$157,107,755
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| | (as dts)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film didn't explicitly mention that the apocalypse was because of a nuclear war; writer Gary Whitta preferred to leave clues of the apocalypse instead. There are a few clues that indicate nuclear war, like the large bomb craters the characters are sometimes near. See more »

Goofs

Eli has been wandering the land for 30 years, but he looks well-fed and fleshy. He should be thin with no 'muffin top' when he takes off his shirt. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Young Woman Hijacker: Please, don't hurt me. Here, take anything you want. You want some food? Take it.
Eli: I'm not gonna hurt you.
Young Woman Hijacker: Yeah? That's what the last guy said. Could... could you help me? The wheel came off. I can't fix it. Maybe if I... if I could... but I can't.
Eli: You know the only good thing about no soap... is that you can smell hijackers a mile off!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Aside from the title, there are no opening credits. See more »

Connections

Featured in Breakfast: Episode dated 12 January 2010 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Once Upon A Time In America
Written by Ennio Morricone
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Not just another post-apocalyptic thriller.
19 January 2010 | by See all my reviews

Upon first viewing the trailer I was immediately giddy to see a new post-apocalyptic film in the vein of The Road Warrior. Being a fan of the genre, one must get used to the repetitive "lone wanderer" theme so prominently used. I figured this film would go through the same formula, but prepared to enjoy myself.

Yes it did use the lone wanderer as a driving plot device, and yes it did bring the arbitrary twist. Yes all the survivors are short on t-shirts, but live in a wealth of leather and goggles. Yes everything in this film looks like and feels like a typical post-apocalyptia. But the substance of the story is far more powerful then I could ever have expected.

Without giving away too much, yes the film is essentially a Christian metaphor. Eli seems to be protected by some mysterious force, guided by "God" to head west. But it's what the meaning behind this admittedly bizarre plot that makes this film so great. It truly is a film about faith and believing in one's self. Using the dreary post-apocalyptic backdrop, the film is able to contrast this powerful message with the harsh landscape. Even amidst such despair, one can rise and accomplish anything. In a world slowly becoming apocalyptic itself, this message is much welcomed.

The other aspects lending to the power of The Book of Eli are its technical aspects. The cinematography is simply beautiful. Moody slo-mo shots abound with wonderfully toned colors. Everything looks dark and dead, the sun beating down endlessly on the dusty dunes. The soundtrack adds immensely to this feeling, using soft ambient chords and blasting action-scene drums when necessary. Overall The Book of Eli is an excellent film itself and an excellent spin on the post-apocalyptic genre.

Oh yeah, and Denzel Washington actually manages to pull off the part of a wizened, old bad ass.


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