Reviews written by registered user
|6 reviews in total|
The movie has a fairly good opening in my opinion, a rather dull middle
and a predictable ending.
The problem with it for me is the same problem I'm seeing with a lot of the new action films. The cameras stays very tight, action is all blurred and close up, so you can't see what's going on. The sound track is all keyed up so you won't be concentrating on the errors in the action. (Which you can't really see anyway) Golly, give me the days of good stuntmen back again.
I liked the opening half hour or so, but the middle is so much like a North American Indian film you lose all sense of the time period. I agree with the former reviewers comments, Gee, if the Britains lived like this why bother with them.
I prefer the mini-series "Rome" to this any day.
The theater chains are also destroying the movie going experience as I have to agonize over 15 minutes of commercials before the main feature starts.
I think the other reviewers are a little hard on the first part of what
later turned out to be a three part mini-series. Part II, "The Rebels"
was not as good as the first, and the third part "The Seekers" is kind
of a throw away movie.
Still, I think "The Bastard" was pretty good and Stevens in the lead role was well cast in my opinion. Of course it doesn't have the technical sophistication that we have come to expect from more recent series like 'John Adams' but that is part of its charm.
This has a '70's' look to it all the way, and the photo locations are easily identified as California in some scene rather than England.
Heck, half the reason I like this series is because of the cheesy dialogue and there are some really good scenes such as Phillipe's encounter with Lord North on the stairway at Kentland.
Forget the bad reviews, just sit down and enjoy. No, it's not serious history but we have so little to choose on the American Revolution and the Jakes original story is quite good.
This should be available on DVD by now but alas it is not. This review is from the double VHS set.
When I first saw this film I liked it very much except for Hildegard
Neils performance as Cleopatra. I guess the Liz Taylor version is hard
to forget. But this is Shakespeare and Ms. Neil handles the part very
After repeated viewings, I have come around. Mr. Heston was correct in his casting. Neils Cleopatra is convincing. You can't have Antony interested in a wimpy love sick girl. This Cleopatra "acts" and gets angry, sullen and has a range of emotions. You could see why Antony would be attracted to her over the sedate but beautiful Octavia.
This is a terrific film and grossly under rated. It was restored by Fraser Heston's company in 2005 but I have yet to see it's release on DVD.
What a shame that this terrific little mini-series has never been
offered even on video tape let alone DVD. This came out just prior to
the American Bi-Centennial and is a hidden gem. The director tried
something quite novel and new, in that he composed four different films
on Benjamin Franklin highlighting various aspects of Franklin's
Beau Bridges plays a "young Franklin" still trying to figure out his way in the world. Eddie Albert plays Franklin "the Diplomat" in a great story about Franklins dealings in Paris trying to get the French to acknowledge American independence after Burgoyne's surrender.
Richard Widmark plays Franklin "The Rebel" getting caught up in the early days of the revolution.
Melvin Douglas plays Franklin as an old man, past his prime but still active.
All we can do is hope that this great series will be released someday for a new generation.
The print that I viewed was the one available from "Belle and Blade Video". The print quality is not great but watchable. This one really needs to be seen in the widescreen format as this Pan and Scan version has many scenes where actors are speaking and are not even in frame. I can only guess how this would effect some of the many battle scenes. The problem with this movie is not so much in the screenplay, with all the elements we have come to expect in the Italian Sword and Sandal movies. The obligatory "love story" and the not too historical depiction of Ancient Combat. Trying to tell the complete story of the Great Carthaginian leader who kept Rome in Terror for nearly a decade is not an easy one. The direction and editing is what I think is the real problem here. Some scenes are just too long while others cry out for more attention. There is a disturbing quality to some of the battle scenes, which switch from outdoor photography to sound stage. Since it is the only movie out there on Hannibal, it wins by default. I am amazed that this story has not been redone. Overall, if you are into Ancients and the Sword and Sandal Genre you probably will like this film. Oh, by the way the obligatory "Elephants" are there, and handled as well as one might expect from this type of film.
Considering it is "Made for TV" this one isn't too bad. Filmed during the 50th Anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic it follows the fortunes of the crew of a Canadian "Corvette" during the Second World War. Not a lot of action but the story is well done and has a good "period feel". Some of the scenes portraying the Civilians lot in Scotland are especially moving. The "HMCS Sackville", just about the last World War II Corvette left in existence, was used for the scenes at sea. The film shows the young captains battles against Nature, the snobbery of the British, a defective vessel, and an inexperinced crew. Realistically portrayed and recommended.