Troy - movie review
After reading my sister's review of the movie Troy, I rushed to the cinema in the nearby Dutch town of Huizen. Smack in the first row, rightmost seat, I had to lean all the way back to see Brad Pitt's magnificent torso. Never have I ever sat so close to the screen!
"If a face could launch a thousand ships, then where am I to go?" (from the song IF sung by Bread)
Inspired by Homer's Illiad, the movie Troy is an epic tale of heroism, love, pride, and honour. There is no good or bad guy in this story. Once you understand a person's motives, his raison d'etre, you will be able to forgive him for his trespasses.
King Agememnon (Brian Cox) is driven by greed and power. Achilles (Brad Pitt) is an individualist and a very vain one, too, for he is most interested in perpetuating his name in history. King Ithaca (Sean Bean) is a thinker, driven to do what is right. Foolishly in love, Trojan prince Paris (Orlando Bloom) sneaks Queen Helen of Sparta (Diane Kruger) into his departing ship. Hers is the face that launched a thousand (Greek) ships.
There is perhaps too much of Brad Pitt in this movie -- so you better be a fan. Having said that, I've never seen him THIS irresistible though.
While you might stand in awe of Achilles, you can't but empathise with Hector (Eric Bana, The Hulk). He is the hero of heroes, for me at least. As Achilles makes love to Hector's captive cousin Briseis and as Hector says good-bye to his wife, you suddenly see that brave soldiers, however fierce and mighty in battle, have their tender side.
The contrast of such men on the battlefield versus in the bedroom makes me wonder whether men go into that autopilot mode of the fearless aggressor when confronted with danger and uncertainty. Instead of showing their fear, they present their ugly side --- the Scorpion's nasty sting. Only in the safest moments, say of gentle love making, dare they reveal their heart of gold and any weakness hidden from their enemies.
There are many good quotes in this movie. The one I like to remember is what Hector said just before leading his army to battle:
"All of my life I have lived by a code and the code is simple: honour the gods, love your woman and defend your country. Troy is mother to us all. Fight for her! "
Notice that he included "love your woman."
1 June 2004 Tuesday
Related entries & links:
Homer The Illiad - books translated
Homer's Illiad and Odyssey - about
Homer - Illiad and Odyssey - simplified stories
The Illiad by Homer - translated by Samuel Butler
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