Sunday, February 13, 2011

My short review of The Eagle

I think I'm " Gladiatored " out. Don't get me wrong...I'm a fan of Gladitor, which ended up winning best picture and best actor for Russell Crowe back in the day. But by and large, I have never really been a huge fan of the genre. I don't hate it, but I also don't covet it compared to other genres. Maybe it's because I just saw Centurion for a second viewing recently to see if my feelings would change towards my banality at that film in my first viewing, but it didn't. Then I saw The Eagle yesterday, and though it's a well made film, in terms of the general filmmaking process, I think it suffers casting Channing Tatum as the lead.

I think he is good in small doses, but he just cannot carry a film all by himself without turning into a cardboard character. You have to be more than a super model onscreen to be convincing. And many times, you catch him trying to act in his films. His plight reminds me of the way Hollywood was trying to make Ben Affleck a A list leading man in the late 90's. He radiates best as a supporting actor, and also is a damn fine director, but he has rarely carried a film as a leading man to good results. How many forgettable Ben Affleck lead films are there ?

I had hopes for The Eagle though, because the film is directed by a good director ( Kevin Macdonald ) and the cinematography of recent Oscar winner Anthony Dod Mantle ( Slumdog Millionaire ) Jamie Bell is usually solid and Donald Sutherland hardly ever lets down even in cameos. But I just felt the The Eagle was a tad cliched even for this genre and the story lagged and became predictable. It's very familiar terrain that is dificult to tel originally and at times my mind tended to started getting flashbacks to Spartacus, 300 and Gladiator.

Maybe this genre cannot escape from it's own very familiar genre milieu to other films of it's same ilk ?

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Started to really pay attention to film ( movies ) what was going on in front of the camera, but more interestingly, behind it as well at about as far back as age 10. Motion pictures ( when good ) are a fascinating medium. All the work and prep that goes into filmmaking. It's an amazing process !