Centurion (Bilingual) [Blu-ray]
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CENTURION is a gripping survival thriller set in early AD Britain. Quintus (MICHAEL FASSBENDER, Inglourious Basterds), the sole survivor of a savage raid on a Roman frontier fort, marches north with General Virilus’ legendary Ninth Legion, under orders to wipe out the terrifying tribes known as the Picts. When the Legion is ambushed on unfamiliar ground, and Virilus seized, Quintus faces a desperate struggle to survive behind enemy lines with a small band of soldiers in a race to save their general and evade capture, torture and certain death.
Le centurion Quintus Dias, unique survivant de sa garnison massacrée par les Pictes, rejoint la 9e légion commandée par le général Virilus, qui a été chargé de lancer une attaque décisive contre les Pictes et leur roi. Mais la bataille tourne au massacre, et, après la disparition du général, Quintus Dias se retrouve à la tête d’une poignée d’hommes en plein territoire ennemi.
Centurion isn't just a rousing adventure, but a return to form for The Descent director Neil Marshall after the disappointing Doomsday. Irish actor Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds) plays Quintus Dias, a Roman soldier attempting to defend the Empire against Northern England's indigenous Pict population, when they take him captive. Once General Virilus (The Wire's Dominic West), who inspires fierce devotion in his men, gets wind of the skirmish, he sets out to vanquish opposition leader Gorlacon (Ulrich Thomsen) with the aid of Etain (Quantum of Solace's Olga Kurylenko), a mute tracker. Though his Ninth Legion, which includes Bothos (David Morrissey) and Brick (Liam Cunningham, Fassbender's Hunger costar), tracks down Quintus, the Picts slaughter most other comrades and seize Virilus, shifting the battle for conquest into a struggle for survival, a Marshall specialty since Dog Soldiers. Only Arianne (Solitary Man's Imogen Poots), a medicine woman who treats Bothos's wounds, arrives as a light in the darkness, holding out the promise of romance should Quintus make it out of Pict territory alive. Though Centurion isn't a world away from historical epics like Braveheart and Gladiator--and succumbs to some of the same genre clichés--Marshall conjures up more of a Western feel with the Romans standing in for cowboys and the Picts for Indians. There's carnage aplenty, but also stunning Highland vistas in shades of emerald and teal. And though Fassbender is a fine actor, West and Kurylenko end up stealing the show by virtue of their more dynamic performances. --Kathleen C. Fennessy --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Where Scott's "Gladiator" is a broad tale with a larger than life hero who comes to shake the entire Roman Empire, "Centurion" is much more restrained, less presumptuous, and more focused on telling one small story very well.
"Centurion" is set in Scotland during the reign of Hadrian, who would eventually order the famous "Hadrian's Wall" to be erected across the northern boundary of Britain to keep the Scottish Picts out of Britain. "Centurion" is the story of some Roman soldiers running for their life from the Picts near the end of Rome's time trying to subjugate the Picts.
The landscape in the movie is gorgeous, though I suspect it was shot farther north (in the Scottish Highlands) than the action in this movie was really meant to take place (a bit more to the south, closer to the English border). This is a pure adventure movie, with no illusions of telling a grander story (as in Gladiator). The action, the acting, the directing, are all very good and very gripping. The story is so simple and so well told that you'll be hooked quickly, and barely move in your seat for the hour and a half that the movie runs.
Without spoiling the movie, this tale of revenge and racism moves along nicely. Good plot, good acting, spectacular cinematography, and a really nice score. The tale of a Roman centurion and his interactions with the barbarian Picts has a gritty historical feel and good gory action. This is a movie in the style of Gladiator, and every bit as good. Arms and armour are more or less realistic. Costumes are fine, though they sacrifice historical accuracy for sexiness. Definitely worth seeing.
A Roman governor wanting to make a name for himself, opts to send the 9th Roman legion into the Pict stronghold in order to kill their king. The Roman governor uses a female Pict slave (whose parents were murdered by Romans, with her being raped as a child and her tongue cut out) to guild them into Pict territory. Guess how that works out Scooby-Doo? The ninth legion is wiped out except for the general who is taken captive and 7 Romans (who look more like an international group). They opt to do the stupid thing and attempt to rescue the general in the heart of a Pict camp. After they fail at that, they are hunted by Picts. For those who like killing, blood, urine, and violence this is your film. The overly simplistic plot, lack of good characterization, making us identify with the bad guys who we know will lose, poor attempts at humor, makes this the least enjoyable of the pseudo histories to date.Read more ›
This is an extremely violent film but worth checking out.
It's really refreshing to see a British/European film rival big-budget Hollywood offerings, I'm just amazed there was so little publicity on its release. This is easily one of the best films we've seen for a while. Perhaps the comments from other reviewers are valid regarding the inaccuracies in the armour, weapons and the actual fate of the Ninth Legion etc. but these should not detract from what is a very good film which never pretends to be anything but a retelling of an abiding myth.
Most recent customer reviews
pretty scene in the movie...typical rome era movie... overall, it was enjoyable movie to watchPublished 19 months ago by gje2122
this order is just as I wanted and im pleased to have it amazon comes through againPublished 19 months ago by william edmonds