It is the time of the Crusades during the Middle Ages - the world shaping 200-year collision between Europe and the East. A blacksmith named Balian has lost his family and nearly his faith. The religious wars raging in the far-off Holy Land seem remote to him, yet he is pulled into that immense drama. Amid the pageantry and intrigues of medieval Jerusalem he falls in love, grows into a leader, and ultimately uses all his courage and skill to defend the city against staggering odds. Destiny comes seeking Balian in the form of a great knight, Godfrey of Ibelin, a Crusader briefly home to France from fighting in the East. Revealing himself as Balian's father, Godfrey shows him the true meaning of knighthood and takes him on a journey across continents to the fabled Holy City. In Jerusalem at that moment--between the Second and Third Crusades--a fragile peace prevails, through the efforts of its enlightened Christian king, Baldwin IV, aided by his advisor Tiberias, and the military ... Written by
Sujit R. Varma
William Monahan was brought to the attention of Ridley Scott by Scott's associate, Lisa Ellzey during filming of Scott's previous film Matchstick Men (2003) with a script titled Tripoli, intended to be a Russell Crowe vehicle. Ridley Scott would work on Tripoli in the evening after shooting Matchstick Men (2003) during the day. He and his team would then have story meetings all weekend. Indeed, Tripoli had effectively gone into preproduction. All the department heads had been appointed, Branko Lustig was working on a production schedule and budget, the major roles were being cast, design and artwork was bring done, models were being built, locations had been chosen. Indeed, some of the set was actually being built. The film was even greenlit twice, but on both occasions, things fell apart. It was around the time of the second collapse that William Monahan delivered his Kingdom of Heaven script. Scott had always wanted to make a Crusades movie, and much of the ideas and metaphors from Tripoli were incorporated into Kingdom. See more »
When the priest's assistants are burying Balian's wife, the priest instructs them to behead the corpse. One of them picks up the axe but in the close-up of the corpse's face, the axe is still lying on the ground next to her. See more »
Kingdom of Heaven (KOH) is an amazing film. I saw it in the theater but the reason it's so great is because of the 4-Disc Director's Cut, which is a must own for any KOH fan.
Story: A well written script, KOH is about a blacksmith whose wife has committed suicide and he seeks out to redeem her in the city of Jerusalem, but ends up defending the people in the great battle against the Muslims.
Cast: The cast for this film was outstanding. One would at first question Orlando Bloom as the leading role of Balian (let's face it, he's no Russell Crowe), but this is by far his best main character performance. Liam Neeson is great as usual, as Balian's long lost father. Jeremy Irons is a great pick because he looks like he's from the crusades and his voice is undeniable. Obviously he's a great actor as well. Eva Green does very well for basically being the only woman in the film and she also fits the the time period well. Martin Csoskas give a great show as the bloodthirsty wanna-be king. Brendan Gleeson.. Do I even need to say anything? The man is incredible. He's so great at being the jerk. Ghassan Massoud and Alexander Siddig do great as playing Muslims in the film. Edward Norton is completely astounding in his uncredited performance as the leper King Baldwin. He is one of my favorite characters in the film.
Music: The music score for this movie is definitely in the top 10. Harry Gregson-Williams delivers a powerful score in this one. Gregson-Williams was a great pick though straying from Ridley Scott's usual Hans Zimmer.
Other: The sets, the costumes, the editing, the cinematography are all superior. They are all very authentic and beautiful and add to the films realness.
Ridley Scott is brilliant. You can definitely see a resemblance of Gladiator in KOH, which is a great thing because who doesn't like Gladiator. His ability to create worlds is unlike any other director in history. The 4-Disc Director's Cut allows you to see more of what Ridley Scott's methods are like.
4-Disc Director's Cut: It has everything you want to see. It puts approximately 45 minutes back into the film and what a great 45 minutes it is. It goes much more in depth especially with Eva Green's Character Sibylla. It includes all the essentials that you would want in a 4-Disc set.
Overall this is a great film and has become one of my very favorites since the past year or so. There is something about it that even makes it rival the quality of Gladiator. It was very underrated by critics and was very well deserving of some Oscars. Watch it!
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