piątek, 22 sierpnia 2008

Beowulf (old)

Here's something I wrote a while ago. 11/2007
You can buy the film on DVD, though. ;)

I would have never noticed the “Beowulf” billboards scattered around Warsaw, if I weren’t studying English. The reason being, I’m not much of a dragon-slaying-demon-killing sci-fi enthusiast and the fact, that “Beowulf” was the oldest English epic, wasn’t known to me until this year. As luck had it, I received an invitation to the pre-premiere show and (for educational purposes) became interested in how well Hollywood would portray the old-English Anglo-Saxon piece of literature.

Right from the beginning, I was shocked. I hadn’t expected many computer graphics (maybe a few that would be used to cover up the flaws of stunt doubles) but this entire movie was graphically designed. Everything from the scenery to the cast was computerized. Robert Zemeckis’ ”Beowulf” was made to be shown as a 3D film and the almost life-like characters demonstrate how advanced today’s computer skills are. The close-up images of the hideous masterpiece, Grendel - with his mouth curved to one side, human body parts, lacking skin, covered in shinny greenish fungus, which spurts out every now and then, leaves a **distinct** picture in ones mind. The description may make a few thrill seekers anxious to see the Imax version. I know I am.

As far as the plot is concerned, it varies greatly from the original version of the manuscript of Beowulf. According to Robert Zemeckis, the Danish kingdom isn’t solely under the Kings rule, but shared by the beautiful water demon, Grendel’s mother, played by Angelina Jolie. Back in the day, the king of the Danes, King Hrothgar, (Anthony Hopkins) in the mist of trying to kill the last demon on earth, was seduced by her and after engaging in sexual intercourse underwater, became the father of the hideous Grendel. To revenge the death of demons that have died by mans’ swords, Grendel and his mother later attack Hrothgar’s village. Some plot sequences remain the same, such as the slaughter of Grendel. Beowulf, the greatest warrior of the lands destroys Grendel at the local mead-hall and later puts to death an enormous fire-breathing dragon, which, surprise, is his own son. It’s an ongoing soap opera with the demon of the waters, she seduces king after king, bears monsters which later devastate the Kings’ land. After a ruler dies, she takes after the other.

My sincere recommendations go to those, who are of a mature age and are interested in fairy tales, or the newest revelations in graphic design. I’m sure many female viewers will be amazed at how interesting a Danish warrior’s story can be…..

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