Constantine: Punching Angels In The Face (For Good Reasons!)
Constantine is the story of John Constantine, played by the oh-so-YUMMM-o Keanu Reeves. He’s damned to Hell for committing suicide, although he was dead for such a brief period of time that he was revived and is granted powers that he uses as a guardian in an attempt to atone for his sin. But he ends up with cancer from chain-smoking (don’t wreck your pretty teeth, Keanu!), and fighting against time to send demons back to Hell.
The archangel Gabriel calls Constantine’s attempt to save his soul by exorcising demons futile, because he is doing it for self-serving gains. Undeterred, Constantine continues to fight demons and learns truths about the LAPD officer who has his interest named Angela (played by the stunning Rachel Weisz) and her twin sister Isabel who committed suicide when plagued by visions.
Through the battles, Constantine loses much, including the life of Chas (Shia LaBeouf) in the battle between Lucifer and Gabriel (who has some nasty plans of his own). But when he is on his way back to Hell, he makes the ultimate sacrifice: instead of asking for more time on earth in exchange for the help he gave Lucifer in the fight, he asks for Isabel’s sins to be redeemed so she may go to Heaven. The Heavens recognize Constantine’s sacrifice, and forgive him for his attempted suicide, so to prevent Constantine from entering Heaven, Lucifer gives him back his life: a chance to prove he truly belongs in Hell.
Constantine punches Gabriel and switches from smoking to chewing gum.
I have a few thoughts on Constantine. First of all, let me reiterate Keanu Reeve’s YUMMONESS.
Second of all, I love that in this story, Gabriel is given an independent role separate from his service to God. He’s given power and motivations of his own, and that’s awesome.
I also love that the final redemption in this story is one of selfless sacrifice, rather than something that directly saves his life. Constantine never asks to be brought back to Earth. But he gets it, because he has earned it. It’s a perfect example of the lesson in the Bible that we should first help others, if we wish for God to help us.
Also, if an angel is being a douchebag and trying to trick you into committing sin for his own gain, just punch him in the face.