Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Movie Review: Kingdom of Heaven

I have been anxiously awaiting this movie since I first heard it was coming out! I really needed to see Orlando Bloom in another 'hero' role. His role as Paris in "Troy" really did me in. I know, I know... it's just a character. But he was just such a wimp. It completely ruined Orli for me for a long time! No amount of POTC viewing or LOTR viewing could clear from my memory the sight of Orli crawling on the ground back to his brother after getting beaten up in battle with the husband of the woman he stole. Icky!

As an added bonus, we have just recently studied the Crusades, including reading a book called Saladin by Diane Stanley! So I actually knew what was going on in the story! (I felt like I had a Well-Trained Mind! LOL)

Pros: Orli was just awesome in this movie, and I have to say I liked the added 20 pounds of buff on him! I didn't once think that he doesn't belong here, or that he couldn't pull this off. He was very believable as Balian! My favorite line was when someone told him, "You're just a blacksmith!" There were also a couple of LOTR-esque things that popped out at me! See if you can find them too! Speaking of LOTR, after staring at Guy the whole movie wondering why he looks so familiar, came to the rescue and showed me that Guy was played by Marton Csokas. You may know him better as Celeborn! (For my husband, that would be one of the elf-dudes from Fellowship of the Ring).

Cons: There was entirely too much spattering of blood. Perhaps I've been spoiled by LOTR, but honestly, there is no need to include so much gore in a battle/war movie. I understand that the Crusades were bloody and nasty. But so was the Battle of Helm's Deep, and the Battle of Pelennor Fields. We didn't need to see the blood spraying all over everyone to know that. Also, the movie needed to be a bit longer to let us in some more on the backstory. One day, Balian is distraught over his wife, and the next he is jumping on the princess! I actually commented "He shall mourn no more!" (Movie, anyone??) I also wish they wouldn't have killed off Godfrey so soon. I love Liam Neeson!

So overall this movie gets a 3.5 on the Savvy scale (losing .5 for the unnecessary use of blood and gore)! I'm definitely going to get over and see it again, maybe this weekend!

Look for my reviews on the following movies shortly after their release:
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Batman Begins
War of the Worlds
The Island
And only 14 months until POTC 2!!


Carrie said...

Jennifer, you've made me decide to see this one! I was wondering about the Christian/Muslim characters. I read one review (on a Christian website) that said all the Muslim characters were portrayed as intellectual and sophisticated and the Christians were portrayed as ignorant and simple. What did you think? Also, did you see Hitch-hiker's Guide?

Niffercoo said...

I disagree with their views of the Muslim/Christian portrayals. There were those on both sides who were ignorant and war-mongering. There were also honorable men on both sides. I don't want to give away too much, but as a Christian, I can tell you I didn't walk away offended or anything!

From my meager history knowledge (via Story of the World and that Saladin book), it is true that the Christians did kill everyone in Jerusalem when they took it over. And that Saladin let all people leave freely when he took Jerusalem back. Just because it doesn't look pretty doesn't mean you can just change it.

I haven't seen Hitch-Hiker, and don't have plans to. I've never read the book, though, either! I think that is sort of a prerequisite, maybe? If not, I may check it out when it comes to the dollar theater, unless I come into some more money for movies soon! :)

Carrie said...

Glad to hear your thoughts on this. I wasn't sure if this particular reviewer's thoughts were biased by the "side" they thought they should be on. I agree with you, the Crusades were ugly on the part of people claiming to be Christians. I will definitely see this movie!

Laney said...

Hi Jennifer! Thanks for posting the link on WTM. I enjoyed your review, my husband and I want to go see Kingdom, too. I have read your blog a couple of times and really enjoyed it but lost the link. I'll link you to mine!