Beowulf on DVD... Hmmmmm

I often choose my Friday night DVD's with my son John in mind.

He's twelve now and enjoys a good Friday Night Veggie as much as his old dad. But the choice is limited. Many of the old staples have been raided at this stage.

So it was with some anticipation that I rented Robert Zemeckis' (sort of) animated version of Beowulf.

I figured it would have enough dragons and creatures to keep the young man engaged while I would have a touch of Anglo-Scandinavian Epic poetry and... em... Angelina's Digitised Boobies to keep me in my seat.


It didn't work for me, sorry.

The quality of this digitised animation just hasn't reached a technological stage yet where I can bypass it and just engage with the story. The nuts and bolts of the technology is just too 'out there' for me to avoid.

For all the braggery of how great a feat this movie is, for me it just looked like a Shrek (1) without all the excellent laughs that we had back then.

In fact, it all takes itself a bit too seriously and, as a result, raises quite a few unintentional laughs.

The bit where Beowulf takes off all his clothes to battle Grendal results in some colossal visual gymnastics in order to keep Big B's appendage off the screen.

Really 'Austin Powers' would have been proud of this one, as our hero bounds from strategically placed candlestick to candlestick which all fall away obediently every time he turns his (computer) sculpted arse to the screen.

Most memorable by far is Ray Winstone intoning in his best East London accent, "I've come ta kill yo' monstah".

That's just great!!

But overall it's not.

'Just great' that is.

Of course, I didn't get to see it in 3D.

I'm sure that would have been quite a display - what with all those swords, dragons and comely maidens protruding their bits out into the theatre.

Perhaps Ray's digitised appendage might have even taken a turn up the auditorium aisle in that version.

No, perhaps not.


Anonymous said...

Beowulf is not truly a great movie. I agree that the graphics is woeful.

R. Brady Frost said...

Before this actually hit theaters I was very disappointed in the preview. I actually found myself in an argument with a graphics student who seemed to think this was the wave of future film-making. I wasn't impressed then and I must admit it is a little vindicating to read your reviews and the many out there that seem to echo your sentiments. Why Beowulf? Such an epic tale should be given a little more respect.

The Insane Writer said...

Thank you for commenting on my blog post. :) My husband and I saw Beowulf when it was still playing in the theaters. It was okay. I didn't think the graphics were too bad, but then again... I'm not a graphics