Submitted by thedarkknight16_ t3_z47g1c in movies

I had never heard of this movie until seeing it lauded on this subreddit. People would emphasize the importance of watching the director’s cut, not just the theatrical. Hmm, good cast, director, many Reddit opinions, I added this film to my watchlist and it sat there for a long time.

I have now just watched this film.


This was a banger, an “epic” in the true sense.

Orlando Bloom plays Balian, who after the loss of his wife, finds his seeking out redemption in Jerusalem and the politics that lie there. He learns what it means to be a knight.

I was expecting a lopsided depiction of events, as Hollywood does as usual. But I thought Ridley Scott did a fair job in displaying this historical event, from all sides. There were some issues/critiques of course, but I can respect the effort Ridley Scott made. It’s only a shame that there are not more epic films made like this: powerful, moving, grandiose, large action, meaningful, spiritual, historical, well acted, shot and soundtracked.

Despite any flaws, this film was a 10/10 for me because of the art of filmmaking that went into this movie. The details and precision could be felt. It had a meaningful journey that was depicted really well, the writing/dialogue was superb.



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ArcadianBlueRogue t1_ixpkwnx wrote

One of those films where the DC makes a massive, massive difference. That bastard is long but so good.

Uh...pardon the phrasing.


Many-Outside-7594 t1_ixpvu7e wrote

That bastard is long but so good.

Phenomenal phrasing there. I'm ☠️


thenexttimebandit t1_ixqfjn0 wrote

It’s just a totally different movie. I liked the theatrical as a kid but knew it’s flaws. The directors cut fixes almost all of them flaws.


ItFromDawes t1_ixpupas wrote

I unironically love it when historical epics have French characters speaking in English accents. it doesn't make sense but at this point I wouldn't accept anything else.


Many-Outside-7594 t1_ixpw54j wrote

Even stories set hundreds of years in the future!

It actually makes a kernel of sense, French used to be the language of diplomacy and any educated person would have spoken it.

How do you communicate that to a modern audience?

(Classically trained British actor enters the room)


Mr_Oujamaflip t1_ixqxn5h wrote

If everyone is speaking the same language then why bother having English in a French accent. It gives you the impression the viewer is of the same language as the characters. However if one person puts on a French accent while everyone else is speaking English even if the movie is based in France it doesn't work because that person is the odd one out.

See the film Child 44. Everyone speaks with normal English accents even though it's in Russia and everyone should be speaking Russian. Except Tom Hardy who puts on a Russian accent while speaking and he sounds wrong.

Either commit to it and speak the correct language to the region or just do it in English as long as everyone is consistent with it IMO.


ItFromDawes t1_ixr2092 wrote

I don't think it needs to be a French accent either. I just think it's funny that it always defaults to English accents in these movies and that I actually like it. AFAIK most of the actors aren't even English so it's fun/interesting seeing Brendon Gleeson, Liam Neeson, Jaime Lannister, and Vorenus from Rome all try to sound the same.


Chen_Geller t1_ixpt4is wrote

Is this the version of the movie that has an intermission? Because I think this movie plays better with the intermission than without.

Its a great film of rapturous visuals, awe-inspiring scale, meticulous setpieces and memorable performances, but it moves at fits-and-stops sometimes. It needs that breather of the intermission.


nbarbettini t1_ixqo723 wrote

It's been a few years since I watched the DC but I don't recall it having an intermission. At least not one where the movie actually stops.


Chen_Geller t1_ixqpg9g wrote

There are three versions of the movie:

  1. The theatrical
  2. The director's cut
  3. The Roadshow, which is the director's cut plus an intermission after Kerak

I always tell people to go for #3. The movie really needs that intermission.


thedarkknight16_ OP t1_ixqsxc2 wrote

Yes it was the Roadshow Director’s Cut so it had an Intermission which added to the experience, much needed


Ascarea t1_ixqdchh wrote


it's circle jerk time!


asoiahats t1_ixqwdfz wrote

I did not enjoy the director’s cut. Watch me get downvoted.


Superb-Possibility-9 t1_ixq7zj5 wrote

The Directors cut is longer ( of course) but you understand the story and the decisions being made by all the main characters much more clearly. Truly the superior version to watch.


BTS_1 t1_ixqq5sy wrote

> you understand the story and the decisions make by all the main characters much more clearly.

This is very true as the Theatrical Cut omits Baldwin V (Sybilla’s son)!

Baldwin V is the catalyst for the second half of the film and the Theatrical Cut doesn’t even feature it lol Whichever Fox Exec decided that is a moron lol


Saviordd1 t1_ixqysvn wrote

It's been a while since I watched the Theatrical Cut.

I can't fathom cutting the child. Jesus. It's such an integral plot point.


djspelleddj t1_ixr3mbd wrote

I would argue they should spend more time on Sybilla's decision to put Baldwin down in the directors cut.


FormerIceCreamEater t1_ixrbb4u wrote

Yeah this is one case where the director's cut was just far superior. So much important context was taken out of the theatrical cut


Dman125 t1_ixqxbaf wrote

I wish there were more historical epics like this. I love this movie.


FormerIceCreamEater t1_ixrciew wrote

You are in luck. Ridley Scott has a Napoleon biopic coming out


Pudding_Hero t1_ixsijlk wrote

How much you wanna bet I can throw a football over them mountains?


KevTravels t1_ixqdcc8 wrote

In my top 10 favorite films of all time.


dinoroo t1_ixpv7kf wrote

The first time I saw this movie was a couple years after it was released in theaters. I don’t think I ever thought anything of it when it was released so just casually watched it after that time and really enjoyed it. I don’t get caught up in the details of the historical accuracy. It’s clearly sensationalized for entertainment value but the broad strokes are fairly accurate. It gives you a good snapshot of what was going on in those regions in that time period. It actually inspired me to eventually visit Jerusalem, which I did a few years after seeing it. It was cool to finally be in and learn more about the city that people have been fighting over for Millenia.


arrogant_ambassador t1_ixpwe9e wrote

I love the script. It’s punchy in ways that make it memorable.


KevTravels t1_ixqdhzv wrote

And I'm the king of England...


Delicious-Tachyons t1_ixr295d wrote

> I was expecting a lopsided depiction of events, as Hollywood does as usual. But I thought Ridley Scott did a fair job in displaying this historical event, from all sides

It does not represent true history. Balian was nobleman in actual history (and not just because magical Liam Neeson pops up to give him it).

That being said, it creates sympathetic characters on both sides. Saladin isn't represented as some rabid 'other' monster but more of an Al Pacino scene-chewing character.


The_Stank__ t1_ixrlxsd wrote

Ridley said he purposely did the changes to tell a more enticing story.

Which in his defense, it is that.


Delicious-Tachyons t1_ixs06jq wrote

TRUE! I don't give too much of a shit about noblepeople and their 'struggle' to be gobstoppingly rich assholes. I'll watch House of the Dragon because it's about 2-3 real assholes fighting over the crown, but you never get the idea these are a 'hero's journey' type story which is what KOH was framed as, with this poor blacksmith going there to seek something, becoming a noble, fighting to keep what was right, and back to square one, except in his new reality.

HOTD is more like "you know Rhaenys is a c**** because she killed all those normies to show how intimidating she is on a dragon".


Other-Marketing-6167 t1_ixqz0xk wrote

I know it’s too long to show to an editing class, but I still think the theatrical and directors cuts should be taught in film school as an example of the importance of editing in telling a story. Green’s character in particular goes from a whiny emo to a tragic heroine.

Phenomenal movie. Also touched my first boob in the theatre to it so it’ll always have a special place in my heart.


vrkas t1_ixrd2se wrote

I think this is the film the director's cut improves the most.

Loved Eva Green and Ed Norton in it too.


The_Stank__ t1_ixrlsk7 wrote

I make an effort to rewatch this one at least once a year. One of my favorite historical epics.


smaksandewand t1_ixpq3hq wrote

Although it might have flaws, this is also a 10/10 movie for me and I tend to watch it during the Christmas holidays every year, just for the ambience :) Beautiful movie!


bizarrobazaar t1_ixrybrh wrote

This movie just came out at the wrong time. Height of the Iraq War, a movie and Christian/Muslim relations just came off as preachy. Also I don't think it needed to change the actual history so much, Balin's made up backstory was unnecessary. But the film was amazing, no living director makes better historical epics than Ridley Scott.


daitheFLeA t1_ixshclb wrote

I believe this film holds the record for most onscreen deaths.


HMS_Shorthanded t1_ixsmwok wrote

There are few movies that can hold my attention 100% of the runtime when rewatching them. This is one of the few that I am completely gripped, every time I see it.


druchii5 t1_ixt97xj wrote

Truly a great film with fantastic worldbuilding. It just captures the feel of the Crusades so well, and the world feels lived in (the sets, costume design, and such). I really enjoyed the "Jerusalem is here" scene and Baldwin's death bed scene with his sister (and the awesome orchestral music). So well done.


GNS1991 t1_ixq0kzr wrote

Watched this movie at the beginning of the year for the first time. I really liked it. DC is more extended and has a better role for Eva Green's character beyond being a sultry temptress.


kaizerzozay2 t1_ixqonip wrote

Can we talk about how awful Orlando Bloom was? First time I thought wooden was perfect to describe it. Sure it worked in the beginning of the movie when he is trying to find his place but by the end he should've grown and had confidence. Nope, just the same old expression throughout the whole movie.


BTS_1 t1_ixqqeyb wrote

Did you watch the Director’s Cut? I agree that he seems a tad wooden in the Theatrical Cut but it works in the DC.


Adulcettone t1_ixqxof5 wrote

He still struggles with line delivery. It's all monotone growling because he thinks it adds weight.

You don't feel any real emotional connection to Balion compared to say Baldwin or Sybilla. Things just happen to him and he's just there.

There were a dozen young actors at that time who would have elevated that part. He was just cast because of Lord of the Rings giving him box office appeal.


The_Stank__ t1_ixrmdu7 wrote

He plays his character exactly how he was written. Dudes jaded, lost his wife and child, being told somehow it’s his or his wife’s fault and he isn’t in God’s Grace and he spends the entire movie truly wondering if this city is worth the lives of so many women and children in the name of a God he’s not entirely sure he believes in.

As far as being a jaded knight goes, I believe him. Especially in the end when he absolutely spanks Guy and walks away.


BTS_1 t1_ixst150 wrote

> Especially in the end when he absolutely spanks Guy and walks away.

Its surreal this scene isn’t in Theatrical Cut — it’s like the Fox execs intentionally butchered the movie lol


BTS_1 t1_ixss5yq wrote

> You don’t feel any real emotional connection to Bailon compared to say Baldwin or Sybilla. Things just happen to him and he’s just there.

So you either didn’t watch the Director’s Cut or didn’t pay attention to it because they explain all of your “complaints.”

The Theatrical Cut is problematic because it does feel like “things just happen” to Bailon in that version but the Director’s Cut addresses all of these things.

His performance works in the films benefit due to how reserved it is.


Adulcettone t1_ixu91nr wrote

I've watched the director's cut multiple times. You've completely misunderstood what I've said.

Balion is there for events but Bloom as an actor isn't capable of any emotional resonance when things happen. He delivers a stilted and wooden performance regardless of the impact of the scene.


North_Library3206 t1_ixri847 wrote

Sadly only the theatrical cut is on streaming services


thatgenesisbastard t1_ixrnivz wrote

Actually by sheer chance, I was browsing on Amazon Prime and both cuts are available! So, everyone that has not seen the director's cut, go to Amazon!


Grungolath t1_ixs1tks wrote

From what I understand, the film is balanced between the two sides (Christian and Muslim) but not within the Christian side and it kinda hams up the villainy of the Brendan Gleason character


HuntMore9217 t1_ixvbkbc wrote

Haven't watch the DC yet, can someone tldr the important parts that are in there but not in theatrical version that made it so much better?


Adulcettone t1_ixqx5ca wrote

Orlando Bloom is the one weak link in an absolutely brilliant movie.

He's simply too wooden and wrestles too much with trying to add gravitas to the role with his voice and delivery to carry it. It's not a dealbreaker but you can't help but wonder how great it would be if they had an actor the calibre of Ed Norton playing Balion.


Delicious-Tachyons t1_ixr2iw6 wrote

> how great it would be if they had an actor the calibre of Ed Norton playing Balion.

Ed is kinda wasted as Baldwin IV quietly talking below the mask that hides his disfigurement from leprosy.


BTS_1 t1_ixst7tm wrote

> Ed is kinda wastes as Baldwin IV

100% disagree with this. Norton is excellent and Baldwin as a character is superb in the DC.


Sks44 t1_ixw1wld wrote

The film presents Saladin as a sweetheart, which he wasn’t. He was your typical(for the time) General/Conqueror type. Though I often wonder whether the utter shittiness of the Franks in the levant made him look better to modern eyes.

And it avoids the real reasons Saladin wanted Jerusalem. Which were economic and had nothing to do with religion. Islam didn’t give a crap about Jerusalem until Saladin gave it a reason to.


Ardress t1_ixq859v wrote

Yo what? It's inanely stupid, as unhistorical as a film can get, and interminably boring. It's a bad historical picture and it's a horribly mediocre film in general. I don't get how someone can watch that farce and think, "yes this is a 10/10 film." Balian is such an undynamic and unengaging character played by an actor who is just not cut out to carry a 3 hour film. The points on religion would be superficial to a high schooler, even if they weren't deeply misplaced in a film set in the 1180s. A knight hospitaller expressing a humanist view of religion is just hilarious. And the Templar characters are played like absolute cartoons. Guy is comically evil, Raynald is literally insane, prancing around just repeating his own name. The film acts like has gravitas then cuts to Brendan Gleeson climbing the walls of his cell. Ridiculous. It's also just shot and edited in a really disorienting way. Things just happen scene to scene. Even if they technically follow from one another, each scene still feels almost random in what's happening. That feeling isn't helped by people just randomly being where the director decided the scene should take place. Why is Balian in the middle of nowhere when he gets attacked by the Templars? Fuck you I guess. Why is he just in the middle of a random alley when attacked by Guy? Who cares I guess. There's no establishment.

It's not an awful picture by any means but it's so deeply flawed in every way.

Edit: Also, there is hardly any development from Balian grieving his dead wife and child to fucking the king's sister. The only conflict he has doing that is the morality of the adultery. What's the point of the dead family if it doesn't actually affect his actions? Likewise, after running away, he never cares again about murdering Michael Sheen. So, again, what's the point of a plot line that doesn't actually affect the character's actions or feelings? Balian just acts good and hyper competent at all times, beginning to end with no change. It might be worth it if he were written as an interesting dude but despite being knowledgeable about fucking everything, he has the wisdom of a toddler and just acts dull the whole film.


dinin70 t1_ixqpop9 wrote

I love this movie, despite its inaccuracies.

There are some flaws. I concur. What me rage the most about this movie is when he wakes up on the beach and finds a horse, attached to the ship remnants…

Like… WTF!!!!!! Is that SuperHorse or what?

Another point that made me raise my eyebrows was when he said to Baudouin that they should build the walls of Jerusalem like stars. Which something that was invented several centuries later (17-18-19th century IIRC, could be wrong though). Ok, he was engineer as stated in the movie, but that’s seem to me a bit too much.

That being said.

  1. While Templars lack a bit of subtlety. Guy de Lusignan, and especially Renault Le Châtillon, were real assholes, with Renault close to being a psycho. So the movie has a point there. Though, I would have loved the movie to give a more nuanced perspective than a very black and white « Hospitallers / Knights of the Holy Sepulchre good; Templars bad ».
  2. About Balian. While Balian was of noble descent, raised in Palestinia, the movie wants to make a point about religion and acting with your soul and hearth. And when you do, you raise yourself above the others. Making Balian a smith (ex soldier), emphasised this perspective. And I’m ok with that.
  3. I used to also think Bloom didn’t have the epicness to match with epicness of the setup. But after discussions with others I joined their perspective: see point 2. Putting a Aragorn wouldn’t have fit and wouldn’t have given the same impression as in point 2

With this said, you may dislike the movie as much as you can. None can judge your tastes.