Sounds good. So why did this film, once known as the Eaters of the Dead, sit on studio shelves for two years? Presumably because of the thoughtless editing that trimmed down the film to its bare bones, crafting an actionfest out of an epic. It's not often that you crave for a movie to be longer, but The 13th Warrior could've benefited from fleshing out of its subplots and characters. On the surface it's good eye candy with some fine pulse-quickening moments, and Banderas and the accompanying cast turn in sympathetic performances, epitomizing camaraderie in the face of impending doom. However, if you're looking for a good thematic tale from the Dark Ages (akin to Braveheart), you may be disappointed. --Jeremy Storey
Back in the 10th century, Ibn Fadlan (a real person) wrote an account of a Viking funeral he witnessed. In the 6th century, there was a Geatish hero named Beowulf (who was probably a real person: his uncle Hygelac was definitely real) who slew two ogres (Grendel and his mother) who stormed a king's hall and ate the inhabitants. Beowulf later became a king in his own right, but was killed by a dragon, but not before he slew the beast. Michael Crichton melded the two stories (in spite of the 400-year time span -no big deal) and in order to make it more plausible, changed Grendel and his mother into the "Vendol", a group of late-surviving Neanderthals who had had superhuman strength (Neanderthals were MUCH stronger than homo sapiens) and domesticated ponies. Crichton also changed the fire-breathing dragon into a column of torch-wielding horsemen. These ideas are so original and intriguing that I for one thought it would be nearly impossible to screw up even if the book was rather lame. It's a truism that bad books make better movies than good ones. Crichton and John McTiernan proved that a bad book can make a bad movie, too.
Unlike some people, I don't get all caught up in languages and accents when it comes to movies as long as there is some sort of consistency. I don't fault movies made in the English-speaking world for using English as the common tongue.Read more ›
A definite buy. You will enjoy watching this one over and over again.