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One of the most legendary adventures in all mythology is brought to life in Jason and the Argonauts, an epic saga of good and evil. As a mere boy Jason, the heir to the kingdom of Ancient Greece, witnesses the murder of his father at the hands of his ruthless uncle, Pelias. After narrowly escaping death, Jason flees his home and returns twenty years later to reclaim the throne. Upon learning of his return, Pelias sentences him to death. To save his life, Jason promises to deliver the most converted gift of the gods to his uncle - the Golden Fleece. Joined by the Argonauts, a stout-hearted crew of sailors, he embarks on a perilous voyage to capture the Fleece and fulfill his destiny. Written by
Ron Borgstedt <firstname.lastname@example.org>
It's a good indication of just how bad television is becoming when one spends four hours watching such reprehensible ineptitude as this. As a guy who has grown up with Greek myth since I could understand language it's difficult to express how insulted I was by this ludicrous film. Taking liberties with a storyline is one thing. Reinventing it to fit a Hollywood formula is something different: the inclusion of blacks and women among the Argonauts is inexcusable no matter what the producer's motives--not because Atalanta wouldn't have made a good Argonaut, but because she wasn't, and Orpheus was Greek, not Ethiopian. The involvement of Hercules for the entire voyage instead of for only part of the first stage like in the real legend is almost forgiveable after that. For all of that however, the biggest beef with "Jason and the Argonauts" is not that it leaves out huge slabs of the journey, makes up new parts and juggles characters to suit itself. In fact, it gets some parts right: sending the dove between the clashing rocks for example, and Jason's relationship to Pilias among little else. Overall, this film is just lame, a poor, typically made-for-television sham of a cracking good story, exploiting all the best bits for all their worth and completing omitting or changing others. For those who only know the legend from this film: Orpheus wasn't black, Atalanta wasn't an Argonaut, Medea was a cold-blooded conniving bitch who cut up her own brother and fed him to the sharks and Hercules quit the voyage early on to go searching for his gay lover who got spirited away by river nymphs. Let's hope that, one day, some film producer has the guts to tell this story the way is was supposed to be told--and maybe use Hercules' real Greek name (Heracles) to boot.
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