First 'Assassin's Creed' Clip Sends Michael Fassbender Back In Time (Sort Of)

We're less than a month away from the release of Assassin's Creed and I can't help but wonder if anyone outside of the faithful are prepared to lay down money to watch Michael Fassbender kind-of sort-of time travel into the distant past so he can stab people in the face. While these video games have a strong following (and a few of them have been genuinely great), I've yet to encounter any non-gamers who have greeted the trailers with anything more than a shrug. In a month where it has to battle the likes of Rogue One, Passengers, and Sing, Assassin's Creed is far from a sure thing, even if it's a good movie.

The first clip from the film has arrived and it shows off Fassbender and Marion Cotillard looking very intense in order to sell a potentially silly situation. Is this the kind of clip that 20th Century Fox's marketing team thinks will get butts in seats? I have no idea. I just sit stand at the sidelines and shout at movie news all day.

Assassin's Creed (which is meant to be a companion piece to the video game series rather than an adaptation) stars Fassbender as Callum Lynch, a man who is abducted by a corporation that wants to exploit his "genetic memories" for their own nefarious purposes. This means hooking him up to a strange machine called the Animus that, through all kinds of science fiction mumbo jump, will allow him to experience the past of his ancestor, who was a skilled assassin during the Spanish Inquisition.

The clip finds Fassbender's Lynch being hooked up to the Animus for the first time while Cotillard's Dr. Sophia Rikkin looks on. It's all fairly preposterous (and like many clips, possibly edited to within an inch of its life), but both actors treat it all with a perfectly straight face.

This take on this faux technology is big step away from the games, where the Animus looks more like a hospital bed designed by Apple than anything else. But "giant robot arm claw" is more visually interesting and can't help but feel like the right choice in the age of virtual reality gaming. After all, Callum Lynch isn't going into the past as much as he is experiencing it like an immersive video game.

Assassin's Creed is directed by Justin Kurzel and opens on December 21, 2016. If you're not a gamer and want to see this, I'd like to hear from you.

Through a revolutionary technology that unlocks his genetic memories, Callum Lynch (Michael Fassbender) experiences the adventures of his ancestor, Aguilar, in 15th Century Spain. Callum discovers he is descended from a mysterious secret society, the Assassins, and amasses incredible knowledge and skills to take on the oppressive and powerful Templar organization in the present day.