The Dark Tower was an interesting take on the “teenager meets strange warrior and save the world” genre, if that’s a genre. The Dark Tower (DT) follows Jake Chambers, played by Tom Taylor, who has visions of a tower in the middle of the universe, seemingly in danger and under attack. Within these visions, he sees a “Man in Black,” Walter Padick, played by Matthew McConaughey. Think of this Man in Black as a suave, suited sorcerer, hell-bent on destruction. Padick harnesses the innocence of children to tap into their psychic and spiritual energies, converting it to ammo to blast and destroy The Dark Tower. This will allow him to enter different worlds, wreaking havoc and leaving chaos behind him.
Enters Elba, Idris. Elba plays Roland Deschain, The last Gunslinger (which I thought would’ve been a cool title for the film), who’s in an eternal battle with the Man in Black, for the safety of the universe. Roland comes from a “knighthood” of warriors, sworn to defend all worlds that The Dark Tower protects and keeps in balance. The ‘last’ connotation the Gunslinger’s title comes from the rest of his comrades having died or killed by the Man in Black and his evil subjects. So boom, fuel to the fire that’s already brewing in a film already filled with mystery.
As Jake and Roland embark to stop Paddick, Jake attempts to acclimate Roland to life on Earth, which adds some humor to the film. One thing I wish the film did do, was to do better job at building up the back story of Elba and McConaughey’s history. Where the film did a great job with its visual effects, it fell short in captivating the audience with the characters. Save for a few “tug at your heart” scenes, you never find yourself being that involved with the actors and their stories. Despite this, The Dark Tower is still enjoyable to watch at least once but can wait for a Redbox or Netflix release. I give The Dark Tower 3 out of 5 stars.