Popular animated hero Asterix and his faithful sidekick Obelix travel to ancient Egypt to help Cleopatra build a new summer home. Cleopatra and Julius Caesar have made a bet, with Caesar ... See full summary »
The diminutive Asterix and his rather larger companion Obelix, warriors of the last village in Gaul still free after the Roman invasion, set out on a mission to deliver a barrel of their ... See full summary »
Pino Van Lamsweerde
Obelix falls for a new arrival in his home village in Gaul, but is heartbroken when her true love arrives to visit her. However, the lovers are kidnapped by Romans; Asterix and Obelix set ... See full summary »
Caesar has had enough when another legion is hacked to pieces by the damned single indomitable village in Gaul because of the druid's magic potion, so he decides to tackle the problem at ... See full summary »
After another raid in an empty village, the chief of the Vikings Timandahaf misunderstands the explanation of his druid Cryptograf that "fear gives wings to the dwellers" and believes that ... See full summary »
The well-known little village from the Asterix and Obelix-comic books is in trouble: It is the last place not controlled by Rome. When Tax collector Claudius Incorruptus does not get his ... See full summary »
When Julius Cesar fears, that he will probably never be able to defeat the gaulic village of Asterix and his friends, he has the idea of offering the Gauls a deal: if they are able to solve twelve tasks that he selected, he will hand over the Roman empire to them. If not, they have to submit. Written by
"The Place That Sends You Mad" is not all that anachronistic. The Roman empire, especially its later eastern part (Byzantium) was famous for its over-complicated and heavy bureaucracy. All that red tape was partly responsible for the empire's fall. See more »
When Julius Caesar lists the Twelve Labours of Hercules, several of them are wrong, namely Hercules killing Geryones and Diomedes and Hercules freeing Theseus from the underworld. Hercules killed Geryones while having to steal his cows; when Hercules had to steal Diomedes's men-eating horses he fed Diomedes to the horses; Hercules went into the underworld to capture the multi-headed dog Cerberus, during which he also rescued the captive Theseus. See more »
Brutus, stop playing with that knife. You'll end up hurting someone.
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I've been laughing at "The Twelve Tasks of Asterix" for about 20 years now. Early on, I laughed hardest at the slapstick comedy segments. Now, I laugh hardest at the history-based jokes and sly sexual references. So you see, like all the best children's entertainment, this can be enjoyed on several different levels - some for the kiddies, some for the adults.
(The slapstick comedy is still cool to my adult self, by the way. Nothing beats watching an unruly mob of Gaulish villagers tear through a phalanx of hapless Roman dudes...)
The plot is very episodic, centering around the efforts of wily Asterix and oafish Obelix to perform twelve tasks and, if successful, become gods in the eyes of the Romans. Inevitably, some of the tasks are more interesting than others. The best one is set in the Place That Sends You Mad, a spot-on satire of bureaucracy and red tape. Probably the lamest task involves alligators and an invisible string, but even that's okay.
The animators did an excellent job capturing the style of the Asterix comic books. Oddly enough, though, the quality of the drawing is variable. Sometimes the characters look quite rough and sketchy, and other times the lines are much cleaner. However, the task set in the Beast's cave is undeniably very well-animated and even a bit creepy.
The ending is outrageous, and therefore brilliant. It brings the Asterix saga to a satisfying close (of course, the little guy's adventures continue in various formats). Speaking of the ending, pay especially close attention to Caius Tiddleus's cup when he's getting tickled by the priestess in the closing moments. It's a good, naughty sight gag.
This movie was my first exposure to Asterix, and thus I have a soft spot for it. Sentiment aside, though, I do think it's easily the best of the Asterix films, and is only rivaled by the very best comic adventures. Hey, I honestly haven't got tired of it during these twenty-odd years of occasional viewing - that's about the best endorsement I can give a film!
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