During the 1655 war between Protestant Sweden and Catholic Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth some Polish-Lithuanian nobles side with Swedish king Charles X Gustav while others side with the Polish king Jan Kazimierz.
In 1668 Polish colonel Michael Wolodyjowski, who recently retired to a monastery, is recalled to active duty and takes charge of Poland's eastern frontier defenses against invading Tatar hordes and Ottoman armies.
Marcus Vinicius meets Lygia in Rome and falls in love. But she is Christian and doesn't want anything to do with him. Marcus decides to kidnap her but Ursus, her bodyguard, catches Marcus. ... See full summary »
When 15 year old Stas Tarkowski and 9 year old Nel Rawlinson are kidnapped by rebels fighting for the great Arab leader - the Mahdi - their fathers desperately organize a search party. But the Mahdi uprising is spreading rapidly across North Africa and the chances of finding the children seem remote. Forced to rely on themselves, Stas and Nel, together with two young African slaves, Mea and Kali, escape their captors and head south across desolate country. In their search for a way home, they must battle wild animals, thunderstorms, hunger and malaria. Their journey to freedom brings them into contact with some colorful adult mentors: Kaliopoli, a displaced Greek, guides Stas through a critical encounter with the great Mahdi and Linde, an eccentric Polish cartographer, himself lost in the jungle, offers hope when Nel comes down with malaria and all hope for her survival seems lost. Written by
During shooting the film in Johannesburg director Maciej Dutkiewicz had a sudden great pain in his kidneys and had to go to hospital. Although his condition improved, he was not allowed to continue his work on the set. The producers decided to go on with the shooting and replaced Dutkiewicz with the young South African director Gavin Hood. See more »
After reading the book and being quite riveted to it, I was quite looking forward to the new film version. I was unfortunately disappointed. I felt I was watching a very rushed version, and sadly many of the important issues had been changed, I believe, for commercial and "21st century" reasons. Gavin Hood, it would seem, tried to get through the filming as quick as possible. I do believe a Polish director should have stood at the helm of this project, although I understand that a director on site had to be found asap once the initial Polish director fell ill. What does stand out are the photography and the music, as well as the young actress playing Nell. Unfortunately, Fidusiewicz as Stas doesn't pull it off. All well and good for children, although it strays from the book and will probably confuse them with the "facts". Doesn't match up to the original film.
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