Some fans were not thrilled with the use of Kanye West’s “I Am a God” in the trailer, but the general reaction seems to be one of cautious optimism. The film comes out Dec. 21 in the United States.

The main conceit of the Assassin’s Creed franchise is this: the player controls a modern character who can travel back in time and experience the memories of an ancestor, using a machine called the animus (that’s the huge claw-like device that Fassbender is strapped into, though it looks much different in the games).

The animus is operated by Abstergo, a shadowy corporation that is actually the present-day cover for the Templar Order—a secret society hellbent on world domination. For centuries they’ve been battling the Assassins, who, as you can probably guess, are literal assassins, despite their desire for peace.

For nerds, it covers all the bases—it’s one-third science fiction, one-third fantasy, and one-third historical fiction. The story line is not totally unlike that of Star Wars—dark versus light, good versus evil, spanning hundreds or thousands of years. It’s excellent Hollywood fodder.

In the film, Fassbender plays Callum Lynch, a death row inmate forced to enter the animus in order to live out the memories of his ancestor Aguilar, an assassin during the Spanish Inquisition in the 15th century. Marion Cotillard plays an Abstergo member in the present day. Jeremy Irons, Brendan Gleeson, and Michael K. Williams also appear.

Assassin’s Creed is directed by Australian filmmaker Justin Kurzel, who’s coming off his compelling and stylish adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth—which, not coincidentally, also starred Fassbender and Cotillard. Adam Arkapaw, who’s responsible for the brilliant look of the first season of HBO’s True Detective, is the film’s cinematographer. At the very least, it will look beautiful.

The hope is that the film is more than simply fun to look at. With great actors and a skilled filmmaker at the helm, Assassins Creed might just, pardon the pun, assassinate the streak of awful video game adaptations. If not, well, there’s another Tomb Raider movie coming out soon.

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