Anyway, a group of literary figures are recruited to save the British Empire and the world in that order. First recruited to this secret league is Allan Quatermain, adventurer/explorer/Sean Connery. Hes living a life of leisure in Africa after decades of traveling the planet. Why Africa? A witch doctor assured him Africa would never let him die and if that happened to you, wouldnt you make Africa your permanent place of residence? After a little arm-twisting in the form of a brutal gun battle, Quatermain agrees to help save his former homeland and the planet again, in that order.
Enter M (Richard Roxburgh), a mysterious man with a mission. Hes the mastermind maneuvering the eclectic (I could have used multifaceted etc. but enough with the Ms) league into place. Besides Quatermain, M recruits the inventor Captain Nemo (Naseeruddin Shah), Dracula vampiress Mina Harker (Peta Wilson), and Rodney Skinner aka The Invisible Man (Tony Curran). To fill out the group The League, led by Quatermain, invites the ageless Dorian Gray (Stuart Townsend), the notorious Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde (Jason Flemyng) and hotshot American Secret Service Agent Tom Sawyer (Shane West).
Why these people? Ive absolutely no clue. Theyve got nothing in common, some arent even hero-types in the classic sense. And whats with a vampire who can endure sunlight? They could never do that in Buffy the Vampire Slayer not even when it would have helped advance the storyline. And if it's a literary reference from "Dracula," then it should have been explained in the movie. Most people are stuck with the impression vampires can't stand the sunlight and it's a confusing plot point. And why, after adding Mina Harker, doesnt it become the League of Extraordinary Gentlepeople? Shes tough and can hold her own, but shes not a gentleman. But I digress.
The League must quickly travel to Venice, Italy where a madman known as the Fantom (why not Phantom?) plans to blow up a meeting of world leaders. Captain Nemos Nautilus provides a quicker-than-should-be-reasonably-possible ride to Venice. The group must find the bombs and stop the collapse of THE WORLD AS WE KNOW IT. Or the world as they knew it back in the 1800s. They also must deal with a traitor in their midst and a script that works against them.
Someone said to me, It could have been much worse. Thats a ringing endorsement if I ever heard one. Its not a disaster but its not the adventure movie of the year either. The CGIs not visually up to 2003 standards, you arent provided with enough backstory to understand all the nuances, and even Sean Connery seems to be lost. But the actings decent and there are a few fun literary references so I guess it could have been much worse is just about right.
"The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" was directed by Stephen Norrington (full cast/crew list) and is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of fantasy violence, language, and innuendo.