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As posted in Recently Seen Movies, here's my full review. I saw it in IMAX 3D and in German, so I can't say much about voice acting.
Firstly, the extra bucks for 3D are TOTALLY worth it! This was my first full 3D-movie and it completely blew me away. There were several moments where my popcorn hand literally froze on the way to my mouth (which is unprecedented, I can assure you) and I yelled: "Holy Shit!"
Secondly, I agree with Roger Ebert's full review: you need to laugh with it, don't take everything so damn serious. Especially the moments of what Ebert called "Austinpowerism" (strategically placed people, swords and even fog to avoid seeing Beowulf's crown jewels) - I'm still grinning about some of those!
Thirdly, I have studied, translated and analyzed the original epic poem thoroughly (heck, I can even recite the first lines in Old English); and I went in knowing that Neil and Roger had taken some liberties with the story. I was not shocked by the changes they made - most of them made a lot of sense from a filmmaker's point of view. I did not really like the Beowulf/Wealtheow lovestory, but I can see it as necessary for a modern audience. Mostly I found that the story changes were fueled by possible interpretations of the original text (well, maybe not the father/son storyline(s)). Neil and Roger managed to incorporate so many subtle aspects of the story I was sure were going to stay in the poem, I was truly amazed. And I desperately want the scriptbook now!
And, finally, while the animation was certainly superb, I agree with Maeve about the dead eyes thing. That really took away from the actor's performances. I don't think I'll ever get used to the doll-like faces CGI gives people, but they're getting better - and Beowulf is a huge step in the right direction.
Mid-life crisis? I haven't gotten over birth trauma yet. - Lester Zombie
'But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.
'Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: 'we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'
'How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.
'You must be' said the Cat 'or you wouldn't have come here'
My favorite was the spiked helmet!
Watched the movie (the "flat version").
In terms of animation, it is well done but not all that innovative. I'd say that the Japanese have done better in Final Fantasy - The Spirits Within and Final Fantasy VII - Advent Children (which were pure animation) movies. In terms of mixed animation, Immortel is also interesting.
The overall result is fine. The script was well developed from the original poem. The action was well planned and executed. The timing was good (you don't get sleepy during the movie and you don't feel that it ended too soon).
About the violence, excuse those who disagree but I think that the "politically correct people" are quite "full of bullshit". I was child and watched John Wayne "kicking ass" all over the West as well as movies based in WW-II action and at that time there were no kids getting to school armed with auto rifles and semi auto pistols with the purpose of killing colleagues and teachers...
In Beowulf we have lots of good action, sometimes violent but never unjustified.
I saw the movie, and of course lots and lots of naked, gold-covered Angelina Jolie.
|*Special Achievement Award Winner 2010* shines on like the stars|
I know this is an old tread, but I just saw the movie for the first time this week.
My beloved hated reading the book in high school (30 years ago) So it wasn't at the top of the list. We rented it from the library. (of cource) I expected him to sit through about 15 minutes. He watched the whole thing and siad it was better than the book. (I think it might have had something to do with Angelina.)LOL
Life is too short to read a bad book.
Haven't seen the whole movie, but the above still makes me laugh. Imagine a Winstone Cluster of those things!
Wait, what? Gaiman wrote Beowulf? How did I not hear of this?! Now I have to watch it!
Just took it out of the library and finally watched it. Now very sorry I did not see it on the big screen.
It was great. Beowulf was required reading in a college course on Western Civ I took as an under grad. I kinda liked it. It had a certain dark creepiness that intrigued me a lot. There were always things that seemed to go on in the shadows, things we either would not or could not be aware of.
That is how this movie felt to me.
Neil & Roger Avary really captured the feel of the original work, while telling their own version of the story.
As a professional storyteller myself, it had the feel of an oft-told story, told around the fire, and each teller tells it their own way. And I like that a lot. I feel that Peter Jackson does that with his movies, especially those based on previous source material.
I thought the animation would bug me, but it never did (it did bother my wife! She has an almost reflex reaction against most computer animation, with the exception of Pixar's stuff). The motion capture suits worked very well and allowed the actors to not only be great voice actors but great motion actors too.
Also, liked the music a lot.
And there were so many "Neilisms" in it. Things that resonate with other things he has written and said. I can't pinpoint any right now, but I will own this film on DVD and someday go through it with a fine-tooth comb.
All in all, a great movie, IMHO. Well worth seeing, especially for any true @NeilHimself fans.
Just as a footnote: for a VERY different take on the Beowulf story - different from the book,AND different from this movie, check out "THE 13th WARRIOR". Not for everyone, but it takes a somewhat realistic, non-fantasy perspective on the tale. It is told from the viewpoint of an Arab Muslim (played by Antonio Banderas) who is assigned to go along with these Vikings as a kind of peace gesture and ends up being "The 13th Warrior" of the title, even though he is mostly a scholar and NOT a warrior by trade. Like the Zemeckis/Gaiman/Avary film, it includes humor, as well as horror and adventure. Although as I said, the horror in this film is not magical, but human. Or is it? There is some ambiguity there.
I liked it. You might too.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Rabbi Steve,
"It is sometimes a mistake to climb, it is always a mistake never even to make the attempt."
Dream, in Sandman: "Fear of Falling"
"Sometimes you wake up. Sometimes the fall kills you. And
sometimes, when you fall, you fly."
Todd Faber, in Sandman: "Fear of Falling" Neil Gaiman
If you liked Beowolf, and are interested in the Vikings and Norse mythology, then please help VuduPins Productions make our Norse film that we have wanted to make for the past 6 years. VuduPins Productions is in the process of making a Viking/Norse epic based off of the Norse myth known as Baldur's Dreams. Before we can begin filming, we need to raise funds. Please help us and go to this site and donate money. Spread the word and help this film get made. Every penny counts. Thanks!
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