Stills of "Beowulf"
(Courtesy from Warner Bros)
Genre: Action/Animated Director: Robert Zemeckis Cast : Angelina Jolie, Anthony Hopkins, Ray
Winstone, John Malkovich, Brendan Gleeson, Dominic Keating,
Alison Lohman, Robin Wright Penn RunTime:
1 hr 50 mins Released By: Warner Bros Rating: NC-16 (Violence and Some Nudity) Official Website:www.beowulfmovie.co.uk
Opening Day: 15 November 2007
In a time of heroes, the mighty warrior Beowulf slays the
demon Grendel and incurs the wrath of its monstrous yet seductive
mother in a conflict that transforms a king into a legend.
Groundbreaking director Robert Zemeckis offers a vision of
the Beowulf saga that has never been told before…
Warner Bros. Pictures, in association with Shangri-La Entertainment
present an ImageMovers Production of a Robert Zemeckis film,
“Beowulf,” starring Ray Winstone in the title
role and Anthony Hopkins as the corrupt King Hrothgar, as
well as John Malkovich, Robin Wright Penn, Brendan Gleeson,
Crispin Glover, Alison Lohman and Angelina Jolie as Grendel's
mother. Neil Gaiman (“Mirrormask,” the graphic
novel “Sandman”) & Roger Avary (“Pulp
Fiction”) adapted the legend for the screen.
First things first, the movie’s much-hyped scene of
an animated Angelina Jolie surfacing from the water is definitely
worth any schoolboy’s ticket price – the sexy
image seems so real, we can’t get it out of our minds.
Thanks to director Robert Zemeckis’s (What Lies Beneath,
Cast Away) vision and the technology of motion capture (which
he first tried out in 2004’s The Polar Express and only
got lukewarm response), Jolie’s curvaceous figure, high-heeled
feet and whipping tail look so real, you’d want to reach
out your hand and touch them.
wonder our friends at the censorship board slapped it with
a NC16 rating for violence and some nudity.
on an Old English heroic poem of anonymous authorship around
AD700, the violence in this animated picture is provided by
the protagonist of the movie, Beowulf, who spends a fair bit
of time slaying demons. He must battle and defeat Grendel,
a grotesque monster which has been terrorizing King Hrothgar’s
kingdom. After killing the creature, Beowulf gets into trouble
with its evil and seductive mother, and so begins his dreadful
brutally fierce battle scenes are bound to keep you at the
edge of your seats as Beowulf sweats it out to rid the world
of evil. Slimy gigantic demons and scaly flying dragons are
what you can expect for Beowulf’s enemies, and the bloodily
vicious fights may not go down well with those with weak stomachs.
constantly moody shades of grey and blue do not help to make
things cheery either. There is a gloomy air throughout the
110-minute movie, although funny one-liners from Neil Gaiman
and Roger Avary’s screenplay do pop up occasionally
to amuse the unsuspecting viewer.
is no doubt that the filmmakers are banking on the big names
who have lent their voices to this movie. Besides gravely
providing the voices of various characters, actors like Winstone,
Jolie, Anthony Hopkins, John Malkovich, Robin Wright Penn
and Alison Lohman also had their motions captured on computers
and then recreated with technology into realistic settings.
Although there are still a few moments which are far from
perfect, the movie is still an overall improvement from Zemeckis’s
last holiday movie effort using motion capture technology.
credit still goes to the many visual effects artists who have
managed to capture the life-like expressions of the actors’
real life counterparts in the CGI picture. However, from what
we remember, the last time we saw Winstone in Martin Scorsese’s
The Departed (2006), the English actor didn’t look like
Beowulf’s often topless (and in one scene, naked!) hunk
with six pecs.
the wonders of animation indeed.
(Besides being entertained by the wham-bham action sequences,
you’d be seduced by the wonders of today’s animation