Plenty of action
Douglas B. Rapson | Pennsylvania, USA | 10/07/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Mirroring the same grand course that Disney charted in the Pirates of the Caribbean, Prince of Persia makes its mark right from the first minutes of the film. When we first meet the Prince, he is cut from the same `street rat' cloth as Disney's Aladdin. But much like that tumbling protagonist, the Prince quickly rises to royal status while not losing sight of where he came from. Jake Gyllenhall brings a lot of heart and personality to Prince Dastan as he meets the princess Tamina and discovers the secrets of the dagger powered by the Sands of Time.
Jerry Bruckheimer takes the audience straight into the action with vast sweeping deserts, majestic spired cities, and a soundtrack that should really be experienced in your home theater. The energy is as kinetic as you might expect for a film based on a videogame. Through a series of events Dastan and the dagger are pursued up the walls, across the rooftops, and through of the caves of this adventure.
The supporting cast really brings the film to vibrant life. Gemma Arterton is marvelous as the fiery princess Tamina who has been entrusted with the mystical secret of the dagger. Ben Kingsley plays the Prince's uncle and is the polar opposite of his Ghandi character as he leads Dastan and his royal brothers on a very personal quest of his own.
I've been a gamer for years, and have always been leery about taking characters from a console and transplanting them on the big screen. Prior to seeing the film, I had not played any of the Prince of Persia games. Now I've got one on order and - in an ironic twist - I hope that it can live up to the film.
Enjoy for the sake of enjoyment! Have no expectations, and g
L. Brandon | Portland, OR United States | 10/06/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've not noticed if anyone is commenting on the DVD set itself, but have noticed many making comments about the movie. I saw this on opening day. I went with no expectations. I went for the "view" (*good looking people*, scenery, costuming, etc). I appreciated the details regarding costuming, set design, and music. This is a video game translation, how much plot do you expect it to have? How much plot did you expect the "Pirates of the Caribbean" movie to have (based off a Disney ride)?
I especially enjoyed the action. There was lots of running, jumping, climbing...just like Parkour (a cardio exercise whereas most obstacles cause almost no problems and no hesitations, just instinct). As a side note, if you go to a movie with little or no expectations, there is also little room for disappointment.
Personally, I enjoyed this film for what it is. Pure fantasy."
The sands of time still chafe in very linear ways
H. Bala | Carson - hey, we have an IKEA store! - CA USA | 10/05/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I haven't played the video game, so I'm down only with the bare bones of the story. What I do know is that PRINCE OF PERSIA works as a sweeping fantasy adventure, and I couldn't peel away my eyeballs off the screen. This picture rivals THE MUMMY and THE PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN franchises in terms of the lavish scope and fantastical derring-do and that nostalgic callback to those pulp serial films. I basically enjoyed the crap out of it. Never mind that these Persians tend to speak with Brit accents, and that there isn't really a Persian (Iranian) actor who garners a noticeable part. It's cool. I'm shallow.
The hero is Dastan, the gutsy orphan boy from the streets of Nasaf who gets adopted into the Persian royal family, but the meat of the story happens fifteen years later. The MacGuffin of the thing is a mystical dagger which can reverse time for the span of one minute (or less). When the Persian army invades the Holy City of Alamut - on suspicion that Alamut is amassing secret weapons - Dastan stumbles onto the dagger and so gains the attention of Alamut's beautiful, wily Princess Tamina (Gemma Arterton). Tamina is the last in a long line of guardians to the dagger. Her sacred vow to the gods would go a ways into driving this film.
I remember when Ben Kingsley was good, but it's been ages since GANDHI, ages since even WITHOUT A CLUE. His recent stuff, with quality in mind, falls more along the lines of BLOODRAYNE and THE LOVE GURU. You see Ben Kingsley parading around in black eye makeup, and I don't think you need a SPOILER alert to suss out that his character is a knave of the most vile-hearted persuasion. When Prince Dastan is framed for a shocking murder, he flees for his life and he ends up taking the captive, combative Princess Tamina with him. And if you own one whit of movie-watching acumen, then it quickly dawns on you that this is the ideal platform for one of them lively, bickering romances. Sue me, I'm a sucker for a love story. And have you seen Gemma Arterton? Things palpitate when she's on screen.
Not having seen much (or any) of Jake Gyllenhaal's films, I wasn't sure what to make of his being cast as the film's action hero. Thru some form of cultural osmosis, I've gathered that Jake is more the sort to dabble in indie cinema rather than be caught dead in a summer blockbuster. But not so. Jake Gyllenhaal, along with the good acting chops, is credible as the swashbuckling Prince Dastan. He buffs up for this one and brings a surprising physicality that's pretty dang Burt Lancasteresque.
David Belle - who stars in the awesome DISTRICT B13 films - comes in as the picture's parkour coordinator, because our Dastan is this period piece practitioner of parkour. But parkour is only one element making up the spectacular action sequences and f/x. You cannot front on the production values. The CG is seamless. The sets and costumes are breathtaking and imaginative. The score is rousing. The sinister, black-clad "Hassansins" are properly menacing. Alfred Molina makes the most of his showy role as a desert bandit/tax evader. All of these elements - and the two beautiful leads - work to transport you to an enchanted desert realm where sand may invade your private bits but it's compensated for by deadly magic and wondrous, panoramic peril and Gemma Arterton's belly button. And have I told you about the Ngbaka?
What I have is the single DVD version, and it contains "An Unseen World," which is the Making Of the film featurette (00:15:51 minutes long). There are also two extraneous "special features" that have nothing to do with the movie, so I'll skip mentioning them. Go see the movie."