They were after the gold as they could not afford horses
It is interesting to see how BBC tried to overcome the Western conception of a barbarian Attila and his savage Huns.
Apart from several over-acted parts picturing a hot-tempered Attila, the film is quite enjoyable. Taken into account that it is a documentary, you will not see huge battle-scenes as you would do in a feature film. And this is exactly where the film loses its track. Portraying the Huns' army in battles as foot-soldiers running amok is clearly a failed attempt at being historically accurate, despite BBC's claims.
They keep to the time-line, then all of a sudden stop at Catalaunum, stating Attila's defeat. Attila did not fail, though, but went on to conquer until "he would bring Rome to its knees" (to quote the narrative at the very beginning). He turned back at the city of Rome, following a heavenly sign at his meeting with the Pope. Probably, BBC just could not fit that picture into their illustration of a mindless barbaric lust for gold.
Another fact that leaves the viewer in doubt about the claimed historical authenticity is the total confusion of archaic geographical names with present-day ones: an anachronism that would give you an instant fail at any history test.
To sum up, this re-enactment is still a useful aid for students to look for historical inaccuracies.
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