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Mongol: The Rise of Genghis Khan (2007)

Mongol (original title)
Trailer
2:21 | Trailer
The story recounts the early life of Genghis Khan who was a slave before going on to conquer half the world in 1206.

Director:

Sergei Bodrov (as Sergey Bodrov)

Writers:

Arif Aliev, Sergei Bodrov (as Sergey Bodrov)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tadanobu Asano ... Temudjin
Honglei Sun ... Jamukha
Khulan Chuluun Khulan Chuluun ... Börte
Aliya Aliya ... Oelun - Temudjin's Mother
Baasanjav Mijid Baasanjav Mijid ... Esugei - Temudjin's Father (as Ba Sen)
Amadu Mamadakov Amadu Mamadakov ... Targutai
He Qi He Qi ... Dai-Sechen
Ben Hon Sun Ben Hon Sun ... Monk
Ji Ri Mu Tu Ji Ri Mu Tu ... Boorchu
You Er You Er ... Sorgan-Shira (as A You Er)
Huntun Batu Huntun Batu ... Altan (as Hong Jong Ba Tu)
Deng Ba Te Er Deng Ba Te Er ... Daritai (as E Er Deng Ba Te Er)
Bao Di Bao Di ... Todoen
Su Ya La Su Rong Su Ya La Su Rong ... Girkhai (as Su You Le Si Ren)
Sai Xing Ga Sai Xing Ga ... Chiledu
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Storyline

The movie is an epic story of a young Genghis Khan and how events in his early life lead him to become a legendary conqueror. The 9-year-old Temüjin is taken on a trip by his father to select a girl as his future wife. He meets Börte, who says she would like to be chosen, which he does. He promises to return after five years to marry her. Temüjin's father is poisoned on the trip, and dies. As a boy Temüjin passes through starvation, humiliations and even slavery, but later with the help of Börte he overcomes all of his childhood hardships to become one of the greatest conquerors the world has ever known. Written by jck movies

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Greatness comes to those who take it. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sequences of bloody warfare | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Some locations were so remote that the crew had to build roads to access them. See more »

Goofs

The Mongolian tribes, including the hordes that conquered their vast empire, rode on a very peculiar race of horses, stocky build, with relatively short legs and a large head. The horses used in the movie look like ordinary western horses See more »

Quotes

Young Temudjin: [Inspecting a line of brides-to-be] I choose you.
Young Borte: I accept.
Young Temudjin: [Turns to his father] I have chosen my bride!
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Connections

Referenced in The Line: Episode #1.1 (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Cold Winter
Composed By Tuomas Kantelinen
Performed by Hamburg Film Orchestra, The London Session Orchestra, One Orchestra, Altan Urag
© 2008 X-Filme Creative Pool GmbH.
(p) 2008 Kinofabrika GmbH & Tuomas Kantelinen Ensemble.
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User Reviews

 
To the right of who?
29 June 2008 | by Chris KnippSee all my reviews

'Mongol,' the Russian-directed semi-historical epic (big emphasis on the semi- here) shot for $20 million in China (and Mongolia and Kazhakistan) with a multi-national cast and crew and Japanese and Chinese stars, purports to depict the first thirty-five years of the life of the emperor Genghis Khan. I say "purports," because not much is known of this period and even in depicting legend, Bodrov chooses to leave out many of the essential connectives that make a good story (or fairy tale or legend). Temudjin, as the young super-Khan is called, is a yoked prisoner, for example, awaiting execution; then, inexplicably, the yoke is off and he's free. He sinks through thin ice deep into the frozen water below; then, inexplicably, he's lying on land and getting rescued. He is languishing in a Chinese prison--his face seeming to acquire a patina of dust and sand (I liked that part: Bodrov excels at faces and tableaux); then he's miraculously found by his faithful wife Borte. She throws him a key and sets him free. Then, inexplicably, he is leading a vast army to defeat his arch rival. Over and over, how we get from point A to point B is left on the cutting-room floor. This is enjoyable as spectacle but unsatisfying from other standpoints.

How Genghis Khan got to be Genghis Khan, in short, is one thing this movie doesn't begin to try to explain. Could anyone? That I don't know; but 'Mongol' presents its biographical narrative without the connectives that make sense of a life. Despite lots of dramatic scenes with snappy dialog, striking images, and above all computer-assisted battles with crunching bones and crackling arrows and ringing swords, the film has an epic style without epic themes because its great issues are not so much resolved as abruptly, magically removed. This may in fact be more an epic love story than anything else. It is that in the backhanded way the 'Odyssey' is a love story, because, though Temudjin is away from Borte a lot of the time as Odysseus is mostly away from Ithaka and Penelope, 'Mongol's' opening sequence gives Borte a primary importance, because she (as played by Bayertsetseg Erdenebat), belonging to another tribe, a liberated young woman of the twelfth century, isn't chosen by but chooses Temudjin when he's nine years old and she's ten. It's not supposed to be that way--and maybe it wasn't; it seems a bit implausible. Temudjin is traveling with his Khan (tribal chieftain) father (Ba Sen) on their way to placate another tribe by choosing the boy's wife from their girls. When they don't, the father is promptly poisoned by the other tribe. And its leader, Targutai (Amadu Mamadakov), vows to kill Temudjin--but not for a year or so, because "Mongols don't kill children."

Well, what Mongols do or don't do seems up for grabs, and probably at the time, historically, "Mongol" itself must have been a rather vague concept. In fact that is another running theme: what's a Mongol? What are their primary values? There is no satisfactory answer, though killing and stealing are advanced as major concepts.

Surprisingly, since not too many are "to the right of Genghis Khan," and since he succeeds in wiping out all his enemies, Temudjin as played (as an adult) by the imposing Tadanobu Asano is a gentle-faced, zen-like fellow who's a strong advocate of fair play. Tadanobu, along with the somewhat over-histrionic Chinese actor Honglai Sun as Jamukha, his childhood blood brother and eventual arch rival, are both impressive. But the real star, with some substantial help from computer-generated effects, is the vast landscape of steppe, snow, mountain, and sky that dominates many scenes. With effective use of lenses and light, the filmmakers have created an epic look, and it's this, plus the authoritative acting, that make this film worth viewing--but only if you like this kind of thing and if you don't mind that you're not going to emerge from it with any historical knowledge. Said to be the first of a trilogy. One will approach the sequels with a certain reserve.

Shown as part of the San Francisco International Film Festival April-May 2008 and in US theatrical release June 2008.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

Russia | Germany | Kazakhstan | China

Language:

Mongolian | Mandarin

Release Date:

4 July 2008 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mongol: The Rise of Genghis Khan See more »

Filming Locations:

China See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$135,326, 8 June 2008

Gross USA:

$5,705,761

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$26,527,510
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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