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Overall Rating

Awesome: 22.45%
Worth A Look: 15.31%
Average: 25.51%
Pretty Bad31.63%
Total Crap: 5.1%

6 reviews, 62 user ratings

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Kingdom of Heaven
[] Buy posters from this movie
by Abhishek Bandekar

"'Rise A Knight.....Fall An Epic'"
2 stars

Epics are rapidly becoming akin to bestsellers. Hollywood has gotten itself into a habit of churning epics as an effortless means to mint money at the box-office where nearly everyone of the multiplex multitude intends to dawdle anyways! Who gives a flying-f**k about quality? This is brainless entertainment at its best worst!

Circa 1184, Jerusalem is a land torn apart between the Christian crusaders and the Muslims. However, peace has somehow prevailed due to the sanity of the reigning King Baldwin(played by a highly talented actor under a mask!) and the Muslim leader, Saladin(Ghassan Masoud). But the king, a leper, is dying faster than you can say Hannibal Lecter(you’ll get the joke when you watch the movie!). And his throne is likely to be thrown in the hands of a fanatic Templar Knight(Da Vinci Code fans might be familiar with this. See, the movie even has a bestseller connection!), Guy De Lusignan(Marton Scokas), who happens to be the husband of Sibylla(Eva Green)- the king’s sister. In what couldn’t have been a worse time, our hero Balian(Orlando Bloom) enters Jerusalem seeking forgiveness for a murder and the suicide of his deceased wife. Balian, by the way, has recently learnt that he is the son of a certain Knight Godfrey(Liam Neeson in a terrific cameo)- Baron of Ibelin. The declaration is made in a rather puerile manner but serves its purpose as Balian is soon on his way to keep his father’s dying command to obey the king. In what is a simple math, Balian and Sibylla fall in love, merely because they have to. In spite of the king’s consent to the relationship, Balian inexplicably rejects the proposal(because his conscience wouldn’t allow him? Whatever!). Jerusalem is now in the hands of the evil De Lusignan and henchman-like Reynald(Brendan Gleeson) who can’t wait to wage a war. Despite Balian’s forewarning, De Lusignan enters in a war, grossly outnumbered. De Lusignan suffers a humiliating defeat and the fate of Jerusalem is now left to the blacksmith-turned-knight Balian.

The age of the Crusades is one of the most interesting chapters of human history, if only for its ambiguity. To see it simplified in the manner in which director Ridley Scott and writer William Monahan have is blasphemous! For an ignorant viewer looking to the film as a history guide, it might seem that the whole issue was just the result of a few villainy Christians. The ruthless massacre of Muslims is conveniently avoided, and all of this is done without making the Muslims look bad either! Talk about diplomacy! All that we are left with is an action movie; no insights in this one people! And even the action is not that great. Compared to the ‘Gladiator’(Scott’s previous epic outing), the scale is huge but the execution isn’t. Chaos is not action!

It is difficult to choose which one of the lead actors is more pulchritudinous! Orlando Bloom’s popularity is an enigma to me. If women really consider his effeminate looks to be synonymous with good acting, they are demeaning their own intelligence. Eva Green, apart from resembling one of my close friends, is one of the most unconventional beauties to grace the silver-screen. Now, she could’ve sailed a thousand ships! Marton Csokas and the usually reliable Brendan Gleeson overplay to the hilt, while Liam Neeson underplays to perfection. Also, the talented actor under a mask is enthralling for his Brandoesque presence and Alexander Siddig as Nasir is someone I’ll be watching out for.

What I won’t be watching out for are any more epics! All the recent epics have left a bad taste. Whatever happened Ridley? After the debacles of ‘Troy’ and ‘Alexander’, you –the man who brought epics back in fashion- were our only hope!

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originally posted: 05/06/05 23:24:46
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User Comments

6/24/19 Edler Stunning visual masterpiece (like David Lean) but story is dull and unbelievable 3 stars
1/01/14 Marty The first movie that ever put me to sleep. Story slow and detached. 1 stars
12/08/10 Aaron S Great film. So few about the Crusades. 4 stars
8/27/08 Shaun Wallner The Action was Amazing! 5 stars
4/09/08 action movie fan battles too short, story confusing-a failure 2 stars
3/08/08 Pamela White grand crusade film 5 stars
2/12/08 John S Sheer brilliance 5 stars
11/30/07 R.W.Welch Madness & mayhem in the Middle East (what's new?). Spectacular but excessive mumbling. 3 stars
11/07/07 MP Bartley Edit; the directors cut makes ALL the difference. Better than Gladiator. 5 stars
6/18/07 William Goss Director's cut showcases some of Scott's most spectacular filmmaking to date. 5 stars
1/11/07 MP Bartley Often spectacular, but more often patchy epic further let down by weak central performance. 3 stars
12/01/06 SabresFanatic Wonderful film. Bloom's performance is quiet and quite good! 5 stars
9/14/06 Kathryn Excellent film, especially the Director's cut. Most underrated movie of the year 5 stars
7/31/06 Steve Marc the movie rocks 5 stars
5/23/06 t3h r0x0r Very accurate. Very good. Vague like Catholocism. 5 stars
4/28/06 jimmy A new prospective of the Crusaders 5 stars
3/09/06 Dk Even better than Gladiator and thats saying something 5 stars
1/29/06 WiseMan You have to understand the Crusades to like this one. Great Effects sound music. 5 stars
12/30/05 chris f a very good movie 5 stars
12/20/05 Indrid Cold Looks great, but somehow it manages to be a very uninteresting retread of Braveheart, etc. 3 stars
12/14/05 Ginger Vague story line, what was the point? 1 stars
12/11/05 chris matt im afrid your wrong gladiator is better but this film is good to 4 stars
12/09/05 matt better than Gladiator 5 stars
11/29/05 Urban II better than I expected, makes some good points 4 stars
10/23/05 Azar Poor characterisation, religously vague, hoping for a better director's cut 2 stars
10/15/05 Quigley jeremy irons was awsome, bloom was not; the battles were to envious of LOTR. gladiator? yes 2 stars
10/09/05 Daran Historically fallous, and a complete load of tosh, give up Ridley!!! 1 stars
10/07/05 anamika pretty bad 2 stars
9/20/05 Jonathon Holmes WAY better than "Troy" & "Alexander" 5 stars
9/19/05 Glennyce Paetzmann Well...I liked it better than gladiator... 4 stars
9/13/05 ray mero Why did Scott bother? This movie is pure retro, 1930's eyewash. 1 stars
9/08/05 Ric Lacks heart and spirit; hopefully, the director's cut will be a vast improvement. 2 stars
8/14/05 Kasia OSCAR FOR NORTON !!! 4 stars
6/18/05 aldo two different cultures fight...a hero we like...Same old story...but worth seeing 4 stars
6/13/05 Sacred Zealot The best - King Baldwin 5 stars
6/11/05 herkos akhaion Battle scenes very good, story so-so 4 stars
6/09/05 John beautifully shot and a good cast - entertaining 4 stars
6/01/05 Mansur I think this Film shows almost correct history of jerusalem. 4 stars
6/01/05 carly excellent 5 stars
5/27/05 The Mockingbird just for surprising me by not sucking as much as it could have bloom less sucky than usual 3 stars
5/24/05 Sebahattin ziyanak objective 5 stars
5/21/05 Kellie It's fun to watch and seems to make a point. Some of it's self-absorbed but worthwhile. 4 stars
5/18/05 Pippin007 Better than Troy,Alexander and King Arthur. Its Ok! Lord of the Rings is better 3 stars
5/18/05 jeff one of the best midevil movies yet!!! 5 stars
5/18/05 vagile Ridley Scott's best film. 5 stars
5/17/05 Neon Not worth my time 2 stars
5/15/05 Maalstrom fairly entertaining movie except for fairly ambiguous climax 3 stars
5/15/05 jcjs i liked it 5 stars
5/12/05 --- ridiculous PC history 2 stars
5/12/05 Kristin The Crusades here are so PC that the main characters are sapped of all motivation 2 stars
5/12/05 Ralph Not at all bad, just overshadowed by Lord of the Rings 4 stars
5/11/05 Tom Mangel Pretty Bad. I thought Alexander was the worst film I saw over the last six months however, 2 stars
5/11/05 John Shannon Not awful, but not awesome. A good open to the summer. 4 stars
5/11/05 mwildema would be a good rental, because you can turn it off.. 1 stars
5/10/05 Morrigan Not a classic, but not bad by any stretch of the imagination. 4 stars
5/10/05 KingNeutron Apparently, Saladin was an honorable - and incredibly generous - man. 4 stars
5/10/05 Naka Crap. Simpleminded, pretentious, overwrought crap. 2 stars
5/10/05 Gini I really enjoyed it. Expect something slower and more measured 4 stars
5/08/05 Dan Great movie, great message... don't know how you all found it boring. 5 stars
5/08/05 saturn plenty of bad lines and acting and boring as hell 2 stars
5/06/05 jack bad script - and fell asleep in the last 1/2 hr 2 stars
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  06-May-2005 (R)
  DVD: 23-May-2006



Directed by
  Ridley Scott

Written by
  William Monahan

  Orlando Bloom
  Eva Green
  Jeremy Irons
  Brendan Gleeson
  Liam Neeson
  Edward Norton

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