Alexander, the King of Macedonia, leads his legions against the giant Persian Empire. After defeating the Persians he leads his Army across the then known world venturing further than any Westerner had ever gone all the way to India. Written by
When Alexander tries to ride the wild black horse, the ropes are crossed. In the next shot, they are in place. See more »
Our world is gone now. Smashed by the wars. Now I am the keeper of his body, embalmed here in the Egyptian ways. I followed him as Pharaoh, and have now ruled 40 years. I am the victor. But what does it all mean when there is not one left to remember - the great cavalry charge at Gaugamela, or the mountains of the Hindu Kush when we crossed a 100,000-man army into India? He was a god, Cadmos. Or as close as anything I've ever seen.
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I read the negative reviews just like everyone else, and I went to see it with slightly lower expectations than I had about a month ago. Having said that, however, I still loved the movie. I didn't find it boring in the least, and I was truly engrossed in every scene. The two battles featured in this movie carry more tension than anything "Troy" could have ever hoped to show. The performances in this movie are all right on the money. Colin Farrell has a scene in the film shortly before the second battle where he argues with Crateros that is just amazing. Also, a quick word about Val Kilmer, he has a wonderful human moment in the scene where Alexander tames the horse where he demands to be able to buy the horse half price if Alexander can tame it. Here is a man who is willing to risk his son's life, and then use it to get a discount.
The time structure didn't really bother me at all. It may not have been completely necessary, but it didn't confuse me at all. Since I could still follow the narrative fine, I let it go. Some critics say a flashback to Philip's murder is unnecessary, and they should have handled that in the flashback at the beginning of the story, but I thought it placed an extra amount of importance on Cleitus, after seeing him murdered. Also, the scene where Alexander confronts Olympias concerning the murder of Philip was, in my opinion, very emotionally powerful, and it would have been ill advised to have that scene so early in the film, since it carried so much weight.
Several people criticized the scenes with Anthony Hopkins, saying the grinded the film to a hault. What everyone seems to be missing, in those observations, is that Hopkins still plays the role as perfectly as it could be played. Can't we just sit back and enjoy watching this great actor perform admirably, even if the scenes aren't the most exciting in the world? Look into his eyes during his final speech in the film, where he weighs his responsibility in Alexander's death, and, now, tell me the film would have been better off without him.
Stone has, in my humble opinion, crafted a great film that will be appreciated by those with an open mind and patience. I have always had a high tolerance for long movies, and I think many films would be better if they were willing to add another half-hour. Is the movie boring??? Yes. But you know what, pacing is over-rated. Pacing is important to people who have trouble keeping awake at the movies. If you have the ability to remain focused on one thing for three hours, than you just might love "Alexander". "2001" is a poorly-paced, boring movie, but it's still one of the greatest films ever made.
It's a great film for those who will let it be.
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