American Savior: Denzel Washington in Book of Eli

In the Hughes brothers' future-shock Book of Eli, Denzel Washington adds action to his old screen magic

Warner Bros. Pictures

Denzel Washington stars as Eli in the new film, The Book of Eli.

In movies he's been an angel, an inspirational teacher and the Black Muslim icon Malcolm X. He's played soldiers, policemen, coaches, doctors. He's spoken the words of Shakespeare and Spike Lee. Even as a killer, in American Gangster, he carried himself like a cool chief executive, the mayor of the Harlem underworld. He has the gift of making melodrama seem plausible just because he's doing it. And always in Denzel Washington's screen demeanor is the sense of power withheld, of anger internalized. He doesn't shout or strut, doesn't need to. Why raise your voice when a good...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!