Beowulf (2007)

I have a deep respect for Robert Zemeckis, the director of Forrest Gump, Cast Away, and Back to the Future. I think he's exploring new territory with 1/2 actor 1/2 computer animation film and I commend him for it. I just think it looks too much like a video game and the story and characters have to be pretty compelling to draw me away from thinking "this looks so fake." I don't think I ever had the desire to watch The Polar Express for the same reason. The animation is quite good, but it's distracting how it doesn't fit an existing genre (and the closest genre is Sony Playstation).

That said, I think the story of wannabe hero Beowulf is quite compelling. The story is short enough to not lose the viewer and the tragic characters are at the very least represented well; Grendel's story and lines are perhaps the most captivating.

I have to admit now that I managed only the first of the three parts of Beowulf in university. I thought it was boring and I had plenty of other studying that seemed much more important at the time, so I can't really comment on whether it was a good adaptation - I'm assuming it is.

Something I find interesting is the way the film was marketed. Scenes of a musclebound hero shouting "I am Beowulf" let the viewer know that this will be a story about a self-centred hero and I think a lot of people are drawn to these types of films. I wasn't crazy about the idea as so many films like this are not multidimensional (stuff like Bond movies and the XXX franchise). I was startled to find how intriguing Beowulf was as a hero - unable to express his weakness, and he had some fierce weaknesses.

Official Site | IMDB

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