Timon -> RE: Has The 'Historical Epic' Bubble Burst? (13/5/2006 4:43:53 PM)
Well they're not doing as well as they used to. Kingdom of Heaven was considered a flop in the States and Tristan & Isolde practically sank without trace.
Let's see what other 'historical swords and sandalesque' films we've got coming...
A film that has drastically fallen under the radar considering its subject.
Honour, War, Love, Hate and ruddy big swords.
Pathfinder tells the story of a young Norse boy left behind after his clan shipwrecks on the Eastern shores of North America. Despite his lineage, the boy is raised by the very Indians his kinsmen set out to destroy.
Now, as the Vikings return to stage another barbaric raid on his village, the 25 year-old Norse warrior (Lord of the Ring's Karl Urban) wages a personal war to stop the Vikings' trail of death and destruction. Forging his own path, his destiny is revealed and his identity re-claimed.
Sounds awesome doesn't it? Native Americans vs. Vikings? Could be the cinematic smackdown of the year. Tomahawks and arrows flying against huge horned helmets and axes.
Plus Russell Means is in it. He's a long time Native American rights activist who publicly criticises films that innacuratly depicts Native Americans. He famously derided Dances With Wolves but supported and stared in Last Of The Mohicans as Hawkeye's adoptive father Chingachgook. If he's agreed to be in this film then the film-makers must really be being making an effort. I'm sure i've read a book about Viking/Native American conflicts before. Despite it's odd premise, it's widely agreed that the Norse seamen DID reach and explore the American mainland. That itself would have been an awesome film.
Moon Bloodgood, Clancy Brown (Shawshank Redemption, Starship Troopers), Jay Tavare, Nathaniel Arcand and Ralf Moeller (Big German from Gladiator) also star. Could this be the film that really puts Karl Urban on the map after the failure of Doom?
Beowulf & Grendel
Adapted from the Anglo-Saxon epic poem, Beowulf, BEOWULF & GRENDEL is a medieval adventure that tells the blood-soaked tale of a Norse warrior's battle against the great and murderous troll, Grendel. Heads will roll in this provocative take on the first major work of English literature. Out of allegiance to the King Hrothgar, the much respected Lord of the Danes, Beowulf leads a troop of warriors across the sea to rid a village of the marauding monster. The monster, Grendel, is not a creature of mythic powers, but one of flesh and blood - immense flesh and raging blood, driven by a vengeance from being wronged, while Beowulf, a victorious soldier in his own right, has become increasingly troubled by the hero-myth rising up around his exploits. Beowulf's willingness to kill on behalf of Hrothgar wavers when it becomes clear that the King is more responsible for the troll's rampages than was first apparent. As a soldier, Beowulf is unaccustomed to hesitating. His relationship with the mesmerizing witch, Selma, creates deeper confusion. Swinging his sword at a great, stinking beast is no longer such a simple act. The story is set in barbarous Northern Europe where the reign of the many-gods is giving way to one - the southern invader, Christ. Beowulf is a man caught between sides in this great shift, his simple code transforming and falling apart before his eyes. Building toward an inevitable and terrible battle, this is a tale where vengeance, loyalty and mercy powerfully entwine
I've heard it's already out on DVD in Canada. Trailer looks quite good.
The Last Legion
This is set during the last days of the Roman Empires. As the Roman empire crumbles, young Romulus Augustus flees the city and is kidnapped by Visigoths. A "Last Legion" on loyal troops embarks on a perilous voyage to Britain to track him down and save him.
The film has an impressive cast including Colin Firth, Ben Kingsley, Kevin McKidd, Alexander Siddig, John Hannah and Bollywood stunner Aishwarya Rai.
Currently shooting in Slovakia, Bratislava, The Last Legion is produced by Dino De Laurentis, based on the novel by Valerio [Massimo] Manfredi and directed by Doug Lefler (apparantly the 'genius' that gave us Dragonheart 2).
Ben Kingsley has said "It's an epic movie...spectacular like Excalibur, enthralling fascinating like The Gladiator."
I've watched the below French preview and it looks..........ok. Looks very Xena-esque which is not what you want. I think it's going to be a case of wait and see but at the moment i've very unsure.
More Info, pics and clips here
Oh and a remake of Clash Of The Titans is planned....