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Tonight I was fortunate enough to see an advanced screening of this
film. Like many, I became a fan of this franchise with the Sands of
Time trilogy, and I was very excited when I learned that there were
plans to make a feature film based on it. The storyline of the game is
very cinematic (at least in the aforementioned trilogy, not necessarily
in the previous games in the series) so I felt that at film adaptation
would be an impressive epic.
Having finally seen this movie, I can say that I was not at all disappointed!
One of the main strengths going into this movie was it's involvement of the series creator Jordan Mechner. He crafted a very engaging screen story that pushed beyond the controller, creating an entirely new addition to the mythos. I know that at times including the creator can sometimes stifle the process, as many will fight changes to the source material that may need to be altered to work better with a director's vision; but I feel that Mechner's involvement showed his desire to see his brain-child develop into a success on the big screen.
In addition to involving Mechner, the other big strength was the way that the filmmakers chose to handle the story. Let's face it, movies based on video games have a very poor track record. Super Mario Brothers, Street Fighter, Tomb Raider... all of them made for films that were mediocre at best, and downright abysmal at worst. Prince of Persia had a mighty big hurdle to clear with this, and they found the perfect team to tackle it. Jerry Bruckheimer and Disney already accomplished a similar feat when they brought Pirates of the Caribbean to the big screen (a movie based on a theme park ride, in a genre that had not seen success in 50 years!)
Their strategy was the same, they wrote their own story that borrowed elements from the game, but did not strictly follow it. The film stands alone, and does not require it's audience to be intimately familiar with the source material. The nods to the game throughout were great, but I was relieved that I was able to enjoy this film for what it was, rather than constantly looking for where it deviated from the games.
This movie clearly was made for someone like me, and in my party of four, three of us, who were all guys, loved it. The fourth, who was the only woman in the group, was less than impressed, and complained that it was too much action. If you're expecting Citizen Kane, you stand to be disappointed, but if you expect this to be another video game adaptation, you are in for a real treat!
The common view amongst "professional" reviews is that the movie is
average. scoring below 50% from Rotten Tomatoes, and MetaCritic, and
notably a 2 out of 4 stars from Roger Ebert. The average user ranking
on MC puts it at 9 out of 10.
Most reviews range anywhere from 8 out of 10, to as low as 2 or 3 out of 10.
If there's one thing critics can agree on, its that the movie is clichéd, borrowing elements from plenty of epics based in the Middle East and fantasy alike, and that it's loads of fun.
The one thing no one can agree on is whether that's good or bad.
It should be pointed out that this film is produced by the same company/studio that brought us 'Pirates of the Caribbean', and it certainly shows.
With that said, I'll lead into my thoughts on the film. The first "Pirates" scored on average a 7.8 - 6.4 of 10, while the sequels averaged anywhere from 4.5 to 5.3. I'd say this movie is better than the sequels while not as good as the first.
So, I'd give it roughly a 7 out of 10.
The story is fun, for what it is. Which is a rough retelling of the video game "Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time", while incorporating elements of the following two sequels, as well as incorporating stylistic elements from the following game and the first three of the original trilogy. Thats right! Based loosely on one game, borrowing elements from SIX more. The movie is stretched too thin, and it shows.
The movie feels like your prototypical "sword and sandal" action flick, borrowing heavily from films like "The Thief of Baghdad", and stories found in "1001 Nights". So think 'Arabian Nights', Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves, Aladdin, all mixed with some Steve Reeves 'Hercules' and Robert E. Howard 'Conan' flash.
Is it as cheesy as that sounds? YES! Is it as awesome as that sounds? YES!
But it's still well edited, well acted, well scored (Harry Gregson-Williams never fails), and overall well done enough to merit an enjoyable experience.
The ONLY complaints I can think of are few, but here they are: A bit too much CGI, not on the stunts (not much CGI there surprisingly) but on things like demonic-esque snakes (you'll see). Too much random slow-motion. The sexual-tension seemed too forced (too many of those really slow "they're about to kiss but don't" moments). And whereas yes, the ending is supposed to have a "Deus-Ex-Machina" feel to it, in the game it is much more thorough and more explained, in the movie you're just expected to roll with it.
Other than that. A fun night at the movies! Grab your over-priced candy, soda, and popcorn (or do like me and sneak snacks in) and have fun with friends, family and loved ones, recapturing the fun escapism of your childhood with an epic but cliché action movie.
Hope you enjoyed my review... And I hope you enjoy the movie too!
Did you see Iron Man and Robin Hood? Yes? Well, this film is better,
simply because the story is original. I know, I know, it is based on
the computer game...which I used to play ages ago...but the story
portrayed in the script is classic and refreshing at the same time; the
performances are natural and the stunt scenes are unbelievable. Now,
what did Iron Man 2 miss and this movie excels at? Plot, and a fast
action pace without being over caffeinated big bang explosions (ever
saw G.I. Joe?)
Having said that, you must be warned, the dialogues are simple but not stupid and it does contain a fair amount of moral references.
Sure everyone is crying out loud about the British accents... "ohh but Persians didn't speak English" yeah but this isn't The Passion of The Christ, or Apocalypto and Mel Gibson was nowhere near the production, Jake Gyllenhaal is an American, but the rest of the cast is British, makes sense they should all have a similar accent doesn't it?? So quit yer whining
Overall a good wholesome fun summer movie. worth repeating!
First of all when I read some of the reviews about this movie all my
excitement was drained but I went to see it anyway. What do you now,
the movie was great. It was fun, had a lot of action in it, the CGI was
nice (excecpt few scenes in the beginning). I thought acting was nice
Gyllenhaal (prince) and Arterton (Princess) did a good job in my
opinion. As a fun of the game; the script wasn't entirely accurate just
like most of the movies based on games but it didn't stray too far
either. OK it was not the perfect movie but it was something that I
would go and watch its sequel.
Overall I enjoyed myself and I believe if you go open minded you will enjoy yourself too.
I didn't expect much from this movie, and wasn't planning on watching it after watching the trailer, which had somehow managed to butcher the action sequences which turned to be pretty good in the movie. It hardly depicted the movie for what it made out to be, so i'm more than glad that i did. At first glance Jake wouldn't be my first choice for the role of the prince as i didn't think he really looked the part, with his slightly goofy looking demeanor, but he made up for it as he certainly played the part(and thanks to the costume designer, dressed the part), coupled with a good body double the parkour wasn't far off either. There was good chemistry between the male and female leads, however, granted perhaps overplayed in less than idyllic moments for pda haha, which some might find cliché but hardly something to dwell on in this pretty awesome movie so its not as bad as other critics claim. It offers aesthetically pleasing graphics (as to be expected of the people who worked on the pirates of the Caribbean) and although deviated from the plot of the game, the important aspects blended well and made for an enjoyable, and not totally predictable storyline. Another epic jerry epic i say. I sincerely hope they make a sequel, especially if the the dark prince is involved in the storyline, that would be badass (magma cracks already showing on the prince's body during slow mo time travel scenes so fingers crossed)
It isn't often that a video game is so vivid, so involving...so
enveloping, that it is looked on as a possible movie franchise on all
those merits. Usually, just the action (Doom, Final Fantasy), or just
the body (Lara Croft...Tomb Raider) or just some other one aspect makes
for a great game, but an underwhelming movie. I had the pleasure of
watching this movie in an early screening on Monday night, and it is
definitely a step above and beyond the aforementioned
The hallmark from the very beginning of the Prince of Persia franchise (a primitive DOS programmed, side-scrolling adventure through a castle to rescue a locked-up princess) was not only having a great story, but telling it in such a way to keep the player in that world. This film, surprisingly enough, doesn't play out quite as closely to the video games as I had expected. Still, without spoiling either the games or this movie, I can say that it shows Jordan Mechner had full involvement in the movie. Many storytelling elements present in the "Prince of Peria: The Sands of Time" video game can be found here, and made for a very entertaining romp through the vast lands of Persia.
I would say that my main gripe is the under-use of parkour, the running/fighting style the Prince deploys in the video games. This is a hard gripe to substantiate though, because of how difficult parkour is to execute, let alone master, nonetheless I had expected something resembling the wall-running, banner-ripping moves seen in the "Sands of Time" video game trilogy. It's harder still to be too down on a little parkour, due to Disney's desire that this film would be the first in a Prince of Persia movie franchise, equal to or greater than the "Pirates of the Caribbean" movie franchise. Therefore, I await with anticipation the creativity that more parkour would bring to the stories this most agile Prince can tell.
"Prince of Peria: The Sands of Time" gets 8 of 10 stars.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Prince of Persia was an immensely enjoyable movie. Below I list the
positives and few negatives of the movie before summarising.
Positives - What I liked about Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
The visuals in this movie are stunning. Everything from the cinematography of the desert landscapes to the city of Alamut and the beautiful sets are a real treat to look at.
~The two leads are excellent
The chemistry between Gyllenhaal and Arterton is fantastic and they, like the visuals, are great to look at. Arterton is stunning as Princess Tamina and Gyllenhaal is as watchable as always. The supporting actors all do their jobs decently.
~The fight choreography and parkour
Parkour is going to be the new big thing in movieland so I hear and its great to watch, really adding an exciting new element to the tried and tested swordfight
~The story wasn't actually totally predictable
I haven't played the games so I didn't really know what I was in for with the plot, only that it involved some sands of time... Call me a moron but I actually found quite a lot of what happened in the movie very unpredictable and the ending of the movie for me was totally unexpected.
Negatives- What could have been better
I thought the movie was meant to be in Sassanid Persia (3rd-7th century AD) but the map at the beginning clearly showed Achaemenid Persia which was quite confusing so the inclusion of crossbows and the mention of the "Turkish" was quite out of place. The Mughuls are also mentioned which is out of place regardless since they Mughuls were Mongols... The movie does include a dagger which can turn back time so perhaps the whole point of moot but I don't feel some more research would have hurt.
~Could have been funnier
The movie could have been a little funnier but the storyline moved at such a pace that there wasn't much chance for much hijinks. There were some funny lines in there however and as I mentioned before, the chemistry between Arteron and Gyllenhaal was very enjoyable
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time is not the type of movie that comes along often. How often do you really get to see a beautifully shot film set in Ancient Persia featuring such good leads and original story? It was an enjoyable movie and a great movie in its own right I say, bring on the sequels - just don't mess them up like Pirates of the Caribbean.
WOW,i just came back from the I-max cinema and this movie was so so
good! Prince of Persia makes Pirates of the Caribbean look like a
I always loved the Prince of Persia games played the 2d ones and all the way up to two thrones, this movie had much resemblance to the game, but unlike other video game movies it wasn't trying to hard to show it off to the audience.Best video game movie without a doubt!
I think the reason some people are rating this so low is because they are USED to rating video game movies so low as they have all failed up to now!
This movie deserves a solid 7.5/10.Ill rate it 10 right now because I'm just so amazed of how much i enjoyed this movie.
IF YOU GO INTO THE CINEMA TAKING THIS MOVIE SO SERIOUSLY YOU WILL BE DISAPPOINTED. This movie doesn't try to be what its not.
It has amazing park-our,good romance, amazing action and fabulous special effects. I recommend this movie to everyone cause its truly awesome!
I was looking forward to this film because of the hype, and I was
afraid to be disappointed. But as the film unfolded, I most definitely
enjoyed this adventure from beginning to end.
Jake Gyllenhaal plays the titular Prince of Persia, Dastan, who was an urchin picked by the King from the marketplace to be his third son. He and his brothers get caught in a web of political high jinx that cross their paths with Princess Tamina of Alamut (played by Gemma Arterton), and the fabled powers of the Sands of Time.
This is Jake Gyllenhaal's most accessible film so far, and he goes to town with it. OK, granted he does not look the least bit Persian, or of that particular time period, but somehow his charisma was able to carry us on this fantastic ride. I also enjoyed his interaction with the beautiful Arterton, which sparks with humor and romance. She was my favorite part of "Clash of the Titans (2010)," and same here.
I highly recommend this film for a good old-fashioned, action-adventure film set in ancient times. The parkour sequences are definitely of the highest order and very well-edited and photographed. The sets and visual effects are excellent. Best of all, the story is intelligent and well-constructed. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer has again delivered a very entertaining summer blockbuster. A very well-executed film of its genre. A must watch!
Movies are like food. There are some which are bitter and hard to
swallow yet nutritious in every aspect, and those which are tasty
albeit fattening. "Prince Of Persia" falls in the latter category, it's
fun to watch and enjoyable, and where intelligence doesn't really
With Jerry Bruckheimer producing, lots of action, adventure and excitement are promised. With "Prince Of Persia: The Sands Of Time" he continues that promise. The film, from start to finish, is filled with well-choreographed sword-fighting action, fantastic special effects, sweepingly exotic scenery, lavish production design, and a good, sweeping music score by Harry Gregson-Williams. During the action scenes the camera does not shake that much compared to recent movies... although I admit there are one too many slow-motion sequences, that (although gorgeous to look at) distracts the audience too much. However Bruckheimer has a thing for slo-mo, so he's excused. The screenplay is about what you'd expect for a Hollywood-filmed Arabian adventure.
The actors did a good job with the material they're given. Jake Gyllenhaal emits sex appeal and charisma throughout, walking through the film with ease. And he's quite good with the action sequences and fighting! Jake, welcome to the action hero club. A big surprise though is Gemma Arterton's performance as Princess Tamina; it is a HUGE improvement from her bland performances in "Quantum Of Solace" and "Clash Of The Titans"; here Arterton manages to inject wit, charm AND emotion into her character, not to mention looking gorgeous at the same time. However I was slightly disappointed by Ben Kingsley's performance - a two dimensional villain. Granted, Kingsley acted great in the role but I felt like it just didn't match to his standards. Alfred Molina has a funny supporting role and the rest of the cast did quite a good job, although I wish a little characterization would come from this.
Still, Mike Newell's tight direction manage to put all these amazing factors together, thus he and Bruckheimer not only made an entertaining summer blockbuster, they also made arguably one of, if not the, best movies based on a video game ever. Period.
In short, if you want to take a little escape from reality, go back in time to "Prince of Persia" and enjoy. It's fun and light on the brain.
Entertainment value: 9/10
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