From a review on beliefnet.com:

Should we be glad a man named Eli (means “my God”) risks his life and slaughters many people in order to get the only surviving Bible to a printing press so that others can have access to it? The story opens 30 years after a global, nuclear holocaust; a holocaust sparked by warring religions. Survivors are living in the grim, chaotic and violent remains of civilization. Values are altered so that KFC wet wipes are exchanged as currency and water is extremely scarce. Eli (played by Denzel Washington) is “a walker” who is commissioned by “a voice” to head west to deliver the literary treasure in his possession. In the story, Eli is the good, yet stunningly violent guy. The Christian Science Monitor review labels Eli “a pacifist warrior” meaning that Eli is a peaceful man unless provoked. Eli’s nemesis is Carnegie (played by Gary Oldman) who is collecting books in his desperate search of copy of the Bible. Carnegie, the bad guy, wants the Bible because he believes he can use it to keep ignorant, bewildered people in sheep-like submission to his power. Carnegie seeks to capture the Bible faithfully carried and zealously protected by Eli. With Carnegie and Eli, we are presented with a post-apocalyptic Satan and a very uncharacteristic, gun-slinging, knife-wielding Messiah. Is The Book of Eli a postmodern, cinematic Pilgrim’s Progress? I don’t think so.

HT: @scotmcknight

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