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Dylan Dog: Dead of Night trailer is horrible; Brandon Routh can't act

Brandon Routh seems like a really nice guy in interviews, but he's lifeless as hell when you put him in front of a camera. He looks good, but the Ken doll in Toy Story 3 was capable of more emotion. He certainly looked enough like Christopher Reeves to play the Man of Steel, but hasn't nabbed a significant role in the four years since Superman Returns hit theaters. Judging by the first trailer for Dylan Dog: Dead of Night, it's not hard to see why.

Here's the trailer:

Here's why it sucks:

As bland as Routh's acting is, he's probably the best part of the footage here, which looks more like an internet joke trailer than a real film. I understand it's based on a comic book (what new action movie isn't?), but it looks more like an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, complete with bad prosthetic makeup and a dumb story involving an unattainable super item that will destroy the world if the bad guys get it. The bad guys: vampires, werewolves, and zombies. There's even a shop that sells new arms and legs for zombies, who seem to be able to think and carry on a conversation. Doesn't that defeat the point? I'm getting off topic.

Routh talks with reasonable clarity, but for a role where he's bartering, threatening, getting beat up, and kicking ass, his face just says "I'm reading lines." I like his character in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (review), but he's a lead case of emotion there as well. Hayden Christensen has the same problem in most of his films (of which there are lucky few), though he skillfully applies his lack of emoting in Shattered Glass. Perhaps Brandon Routh just needs to find the right role. He'd be great in a movie by Robert Bresson. Unfortunately Bresson left us some years back. Until then, we get Dylan Dog.

And speaking of Dylan Dog, it already looks worse than Van Helsing. There is always room for films that poke fun at genres and play with conventions, but they shouldn't have worse special effects than Tenacious D and the Pick of Destiny or be written by the duo behind A Sound of Thunder (2005). And sadly, Van Helsing has yet another advantage over Dylan Dog: Hugh Jackman can look pissed.

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