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Alexander

Genre: Action/Drama
Rated: R
Directed by
: OLIVER STONE
Produced by: THOMAS SCHUHLY, JOHN KILIK, IAIN SMITH, MORITZ BORMAN
Starring: COLIN FARRELL, ANGELINA JOLIE, VAL KILMER, JARED LETO, ROSARIO DAWSON, ANTHONY HOPKINS
Released by: Warner Bros. Picture

In Short: Despite brilliant battle sequences and vibrant depictions of foreign lands, Alexander is little more than an over-the-top lesson in Greek history.

An Empty Epic
This Hero Won't Conquer Audiences
By Cherie Saunders

Oliver Stone has gone completely over the top with his nearly three-hour long epic-wannabe. Colin Farrell portrays the conquering Greek hero who expanded his empire to encompass 90 percent of the known world by the age of 25. The film follows his eight years of battles that began in Macedonia, forged west through the Middle East and Egypt and finally through Asia to India—commanding an army created by his one-eyed father King Philip, played evocatively by Val Kilmer.


Shooting largely on location in Morocco, Stone delivers aesthetically with brilliant battle sequences and vibrant depictions of foreign lands; particularly memorable are the colorful scenes of decadence throughout Persia. But it's the pretentious, long-winded dialogue that is “Alexander's” ultimate undoing. Anthony Hopkins narrates the tale as Alexander's trusted general Ptolemy, frequently bringing the momentum and thrill of Stone's battlefields to a screeching halt with dry oration resembling a high school lecturer. Angelina Jolie adopts a cartoonish accent as Alexander's snake-worshipping mother Olympius, whose domineering presence echoes through many of his decisions.


Much hubbub has been made about the film's references to Alexander the Great's alleged bi-sexuality and deep affection for his lifelong friend, lover and battle mate Hephaistion, played by Jared Leto. Sadly, the current headline-grabbing debate about this part of his life is more intriguing than the actual depiction in the movie. Rosario Dawson is visually stunning, but given little to do as Alexander's ambitious wife Roxane. Armed to the teeth with derivative dialogue that seems ripped from the pages of a middle-school production, Alexander is little more than an over-the-top lesson in Greek history
.


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