With these simple constructions, its easy to see where they decided the hook would be. I imagine the pitch was that this would be “Braveheart” meets “Gladiator” but with a fighten’ gal. I’m sure they took a model and put her in blue tattoos and unlikely leather seminude battlegear and took photos to say: here, see?
And perhaps there was some discussion about the two physical devices, the ice and the wall. The financiers would have called in the religious consultants to determine whether the script would offend the religious right, the script depicting the church as evil. But that’s safe, the report would have come back.
The writer will have described great masses of flowing arrows and these would have been storyboarded and budgeted way early in the game. They would have selected a safe director, someone with no discernible style and no artistic ambitions.
So I will comment on it only as it was intended. The effects depend on exploiting the nature of space — the ice and wall I mentioned, but also the smoke and manoeuvres in the final battle. There is no exploitation of space, not even to the extent of “Lord of the Rings,“ which we should probably call the WETA standard.
The battles are less manic than any I have seen even though “Seven Samurai” is clearly a model for several elements of this.
The girl here is Kiera Knightly, whose appeal I never understood. Here she is a sort of Joan of Arc character, and I found myself actually wishing for Milla Jovavich! The whole thing — the human parts anyway — revolve around her and she doesn’t have the chops. She is the mother of an entire nation, her battles, her loves but she always looks like she is playing soccer.
Posted in 2007
Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.