I cant think of anything that would tickle me more than reviewing a movie to honor Dr. Devience and her 1st Epinions anniversary. That is, unless it was one that the gentle Doc had reviewed herself, and absolutely flamed. [ Docs Druid Review ]. Really, her review takes all the fun out of mine because I SO wanted to blast this baby .
Its ssslllooowww and confusing Unless you are up on your Teutonic lore or Druidiac following, you are pretty lost on this movie. There are so many different groups fighting with and against each other, it gets really confusing. Plus they tend to change sides periodically, which they signify by switching their cloak from the right shoulder to the left shoulder. Huh?
You have Caesar down with no problem. He never changes sides.
"Até tu, Vercingétorix? The scam takes place in 60 B.C. when Caesar decides its time to take over the world. He takes Vercingétorix under his wing, promising to make him king if he but fights by his side and brings along his pals. At first Vercingétorix agrees, then changes his mind and his side in the war. This makes Caesar pretty ticked off.
Although Caesar is a powerful force, he is a mincing and prissy leader. He has no scruples and doesnt care who he takes down as he marches across the country. However, Vercingétorix has a presence about him, leadership ability if you will, and he manages to gather many different groups together, forming what is known as the Gaelic Army, to fight the mighty Caesar.
Forming allies I couldnt manage to get a warm fuzzy about anyone in this movie, except maybe the sword wielding Rhia, who teaches Vercingétorix how to handle himself in battle, although I must admit Epona wasnt a bad look at all.
Epona, played by a tasty Inés Sastre, was the child then woman queen-to-be of Vercingétorix. They had been together as children and committed their love [in words] to each other. As adults they did more than words. She held a strong part in the movie but most of it was visual and a lot of eye shots. Her speaking parts were lame and inconsequential but she was a pretty look. I did take issue with some of her towering hair-dos though, strange times those.
Rhia, the sword wielder and teacher, played by Maria Kavardjikova, wasnt a bad look either. She does bare breasts once to lure a Caesarian officer. An older and stronger force in the movie than Epona, she still did not excel in her speaking parts. However, I doubt many were interested in her speech patterns.
Rhia reminds me of how I would picture Doc - sword flashing in the sun, not sure about the bared breasts though.
Vercingétorix was played by a weak and worthless Christopher Lambert. For someone purported to be in such power and leadership ability, he instead portrayed a weak and ineffective person. And I cant blame it all on poor script, he just didnt carry a presence about him that would suggest this leadership. I wouldnt have followed him to the bathroom unless I already had to go.
Guttuart was a sort of mentor-like creature in Vercingétorixs life. I took it from his appearance and mannerisms that he was a Druid chieftain of some sort. Played by the accomplished Max von Sydow he flitted in and out of the movie as needed. Never a huge presence on the screen, more a plodding old fool if you ask me.
Finally, Caesar, the nasty, was played by Klaus Maria Brandauer. Probably the most powerful part in the movie, he at least drew feelings from you. Not good feelings, but that was the intention you know, no sympathy for Caesar. I didnt feel that he was the actual leader of his people, that they were following him out of devotion, but rather than they were beside and behind him out of duty and fear. He presented a more simpering and prissy attitude, which I understand Caesar did himself.
For every cloud, there is a silver lining Although the movie blew huge chunks, costuming and scenery were outstanding. Filmed in the countryside of Sofia, Bulgaria, during the fall of the year, the outlying vista was beautiful. Youll have to forgive me here, I dont remember or particularly care, who the different warring civilizations were. However, when the group, lead by Vercingétorix were shown, the scenery was always washed with brilliant oranges and yellows in the background. The cloaks worn by this group was a soft orange and yellow plaid.
As well, when his buddies are shown in their blue and green plaid cloaks, the background is awash in green trees, blue skies, and water. When Caesars troop comes around in their blazing red skirts and gold helmets and breast plates, all the surrounding area is mainly flat green or dirt fields. I dont know, I just found it interesting how the scenery adapted to the player.
The costumes on Caesars troop were wonderful. So opulent and masculine, even in their cute pleated skirts. I was reminded immediately of the Trojan marching band from USC when I saw them in the Rose Parade. So majestic and forceful. In costume they presented a daunting enemy since the opposing Gaelic forces seemed so mismatched and thrown together. Reminds you of pee-wee softball when one team shows up complete in uniforms and cleats and the other team has on shorts and torn shirts with borrowed gloves.
I assume the costuming for the Gaelic armies was chosen, not only to represent the times but also to affect a symbol. Appearing mostly thrown together and not fitting well, much like the troops themselves, they were identified only by their cloaks, and not all soldiers had cloaks. This is how the entire army appeared, coming together with little leadership but a common thread, freedom from Caesar.
Druids was written by Jacques Dorfmann and Rospo Pallenberg, directing by Jacques Dorfmann. It was nominated in 2001 by Fantasporto for Best Film at the International Fantasy Film Awards. I was neither impressed nor disappointed in the movie. I have long since stopped watching movies for the sheer pleasure of watching a movie anymore and now attend to details. When I run across a rare gem that pulls me away from note taking for a review, to enjoying the actual movie, I watch it more than once for the pleasure alone of enjoying the movie. This wasnt one of those.
My only question is, what was up with all those guys with that fake dyed red hair?
My congratulations to Ms. Devience for sticking it out for a year. I wlll admit I have posted early, but she deserves it and she knows why, besides IT IS HER BIRTHDAY - grin
Suitability For Children: Not suitable for Children of any age
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Susi Dawson (SusiDee34)
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Christopher Lambert stars as strong but peace-loving Gallic chieftain Vercingetorix in the year 60 B.C. Vercingetorix's peaceful way of life with his fellow druids is disrupted when Julius Caesar and his army declare war. He is inspired just before battle by a reunion with his childhood love and then prepares his people for a battle that will change history! This epic French production also stars Max Von Sydow and Klaus Maria Brandauer.