The Hero’s Journey Is Unearned
At their core, the first few Assassin’s Creed games are about Desmond Miles using his past (and the pasts of his ancestors) as a way to change his present, and hopefully make the future a better place. What a nice storyline! Unfortunately for the film, Miles’s journey takes place over the course of multiple games and myriad time periods. Fassbender’s character, Callum, has the unfortunate job of going through this full hero’s journey in just under two hours, and we have to watch him go from death row inmate to perfect assassin leader man without actually doing anything in the past that a player would have to do in the game. There are no real obstacles to speak of, other than actually getting the desire to hook up to the Animus so he can faux-time travel. Obviously, Fassbender and company don’t have the time to release three films so his character can grow into the big daddy assassin that he’s destined to be, but if you know the case going into the film, then why not write his story in a way that feels more organic?