Tuesday, January 23, 2007


"A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within."

And so Apocalypto begins on the premise that we are about to witness the declining days of the Mayan civilisation brought about by its own design.
Except that it's really a chase film about a man eluding capture and attempting to return to his wife and child. A more apt title would have been 'Escape'.

The Mayan setting is essentially only a backdrop for the story as I feel the main element was one mans struggle to escape and return safely to his family. You have no doubt seen these types of films many times before and it is almost a wasted opportunity and a facetious setting of the Mayan civilisation that Apocalypto takes place.

Many people have said that the film is violent and gory and have based their reviews around the fact but I did not find this true at all, certainly in terms of taking centre stage in a visual context. Admittedly a few hearts are cut out [although one does not even see this being done] and heads bashed in but the few blood effects that depict this are so unrealistic they caused me to laugh rather than grimace. Yes, there is violence but it is necessary within such a tribal setting where crude instruments of battle are used.

The film also rolls in at 2 1/2 hours which is 30 minutes too long and a lot of scenes could be removed without affecting the film.

Overall, Apocalypto is a simple chase film dressed up in a facade of historical hullaballoo and theatrical pomposity. There are better films of a similar nature out there which dispense with such an elaborate canopy and stick to the essential components of the genre.

I would give this movie 5.1 sacrifices out of 10.



Blogger Skry said...

Sounds like the main thing you sacrificed was 2 1/2 hours of your time! Thanks for the heads up - I don't think I'll be watching that one.

I'll be watching Rocky tonight though, so I'll try to blog it for you ASAP.

12:25 am  

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