Top News
WE CONTINUE TO SUPPORT MICHAEL-AN AWARD WINNING ACTOR

Congratulations to the cast and crew of "12 Years a Slave" winning an Oscar for Best Picture

Michael is currently filming "MacBeth"

Watch "12 Years A Slave" and "Frank" in theaters

Watch "The Counselor" and "12 Years A Slave" on DVD available now

Michael is set to star and produce on a film version of the video game "Assassin's Creed"

Completed projects: X-Men, Untitled Malik project

Upcoming projects Assassin's Creed, Prometheus 2, MacBeth,and more!

Header credit here

MFmultiply's Disclaimer


Order region 1 dvds-Amazon store

Order region 2-UK dvds-Amazon Shoppe

Please check the calender for films on TV, Theater, or dvd releases
September 2017
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
     12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Calendar Calendar


Centurion Reviews 4

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sun Mar 20, 2011 7:05 pm

http://reviewqueen-sewbizzie.blogspot.com/2011/03/fight-or-die.html

Sunday, 20 March 2011
Fight or Die
New post is a review for the film Centurion....

It is 117 AD and the Romans are trying to conquer Northern Britain, unfortunately they are coming up against the Picts who are not willing to let them take their land. It is the Roman 7th Legion who are left to try and fight them off, they are headed by General Virilus and a sole survivor of the raid on the battle fort Quintus Dias.

The men are tricked and led into a trap where the whole legion gets wiped out with the exception of 5 men, they are the only men left who now face the last of freeing the General and trying to fight for the land or make it to safety.

Just can these men fight off the Picts when they have a master tracker and will they ever free the General and make it to safety.

I have only been able to give a very brief plot summery for this film as I just don’t want to give too much of the story away but believe me there is so much more to the story and it is not as basic as I have made it out to be and I say it is definitely worth watching. I did not fancy watching this film when hubby spotted the DVD but I did give in and sat down to watch it with him, after the first 5 minutes I have to confess to being totally hooked, I found the story to be excellent and so to was the acting. I think the one thing which made me enjoy this film so much was the effects though. I did at the very start of the film have issues with who was who in the film and what side they were on but after about 10 minutes I found this much simpler to work out, I think I found it so hard as the Romans all spoke perfect English and had English accents despite being from Greece and all over Rome.

The acting was of a very high standard. The lead role was that of Quintus Dias and I found him to be a very strong character, he was played by Michael Fassbender. He showed great courage and strength right from the start of the film and this did not let up for the whole of the film. He delivered all of his lines with ease and made his character very believable. He was likable and did show a slightly softer side towards the second half of the film and I did enjoy this as it showed he was not just a fighter and killer but also a man with feelings and needs. He worked well with the other men who he led and I though they all had a good on screen bond. The other lead role at the start of the film was that of General Virilus, played by Dominic West, he to was a very strong a hard character and bought a lot to the film. I enjoyed watching the different sides to him, he would be a strong leader but the next minute he would be a normal everyday down to Erath man being friendly with his troops and I found this to be quite realistic and made me think a lot more of him.

We did have some other very good actors in the film and the one which really stood out for me was that of Etain, played by Olga Kurylenko, she was an excellent character who was very complex. I loved how strong and independent she was and she was a person who was not to be messed with. She for me was the strongest character in the whole film and showed that women can fight and make a very good job of it. Other actors in the film included, Ulrich Thomsen, Noel Clarke and David Morrissey.

The film was set in Scotland and the North of England and I loved the setting, we did actually have the whole film filmed in England, the setting for the filming was Alice Holt forest in Hampshire and I loved all of the views and scenery which we got. The countryside was amazing and I did actually have a hard time believing we had such amazing places in England. Web had some very spectacular mountain and hill shots and I found all of them a pleasure to watch and they did make the film so much more enjoyable. The costumes were all in keeping with the theme of the film and the year, the Roman uniforms all looked good and so to did the men wearing them. The weapons were also very good and fitting too.

There is a lot of violence in this film and I did actually find some of it very gruesome, we had me being beheaded and stabbed all the way through the film. The make up and effects which were used on these was of a very high standard and I did actually find myself looking away for some of the fight scenes as they were very graphic. I think these scenes were helped by the high level of acting, the actors seemed at ease with the weapons and looked like they genuinely knew how to use them. There was no point in the film when I felt the fights looked staged or choreographed.

The music was also very good, this is a film set in 117 AD and as a result the soundtracks was very orchestral and classical. I loved all of the tracks and found that they did help with the drama, tension and emotions of the film.

The film can be bought on DVD for £7 in Tesco and I do think this is a very fair price. The run time of the film is 93 minutes and I did find this to be a very good length with the story moving at a steady pace from start to finish. The rate is a 15 and I do actually think it should be an 18. There is a lot of violence right from the start of the film and it is very graphical and detailed. I would advise not watching when eating or if you have a sensitive stomach!

I am more than happy to give this film the full 5 stars and a high recommendation. It was a lot better than I thought it was going to be, there is a really good story to it which is helped by the excellent acting. There is loads of action for the male audience and some very good looking men for the female on. I do advise though this is not one for a young audience and personally I would give it an 18 rate.
Posted by sewbizzie at 01:44
Email This BlogThis! Share to Twitter Share to Facebook

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Tue Mar 29, 2011 4:49 am

http://teddroe.blogspot.com/2011/03/reviews-black-hawk-down-centurion-rango.html

Centurion

I wouldn’t exactly call it a masterpiece, but Centurion deserves a little more attention than it got. A summer 2010 release, it passed out of theaters nearly as quickly as it entered them, and was less than an afterthought for most people that year. I suppose it isn’t hard to see why; it’s a good but not great movie that didn’t make much money (barely six figures in the U.S, and only a few million abroad) and doesn’t feature any particularly well-known stars. Still, it’s a bit of a shame.

Centurion purports to tell the story of the Roman 9th Legion which, at least according to legend, disappeared in northern Britannia sometime around 117 A.D. The movie begins when centurion Quintas Dias (Michael Fassbender) is captured by the Picts, who have been fighting a guerrilla insurrection against the Roman conquerors in Britain for years. Dias manages to escape, and meets up with the Ninth Legion, commanded by General Virilus (McNulty), which is on a mission to root out and destroy the pictish resistance. However, the legion is betrayed by its guide Etain (Olga Kurylenko) and slaughtered almost to a man. The survivors, lead by Dias, decide to attempt a rescue of the captured general, and then to somehow make it back to safety. It is a task that will prove very, very difficult.

The cast is largely up-and-comers, people who are just starting to make a name for themselves in Hollywood. A little starpower might have been nice—I’m of the opinion that actors usually become famous for a reason; acting ability, screen presence, or both—but with a budget of only $12 million that probably wasn’t possible. Still, the acting is never anything less than adequate. Fassbender (Magneto in the new X-Men movie) is a credible leading man, and Olga Kurlylenko glowers impressively. McNulty (technically, his real name is Dominic West) is a scene-stealer as the boisterous and charismatic General Virilus.

The standout element of Centurion is undoubtedly the breathtaking cinematography of northern Britain. The camerawork is gorgeous, and the movie even manages to incorporate the title sequences into the beautiful wilderness.

Other than the scenery, this is very much a movie that does nothing particularly poorly but also nothing memorably well. It’s good at everything and bad at nothing, but also great at nothing. Which is fine, really. That makes it better than a lot of what’s out there. I suppose if I had to choose a weakness, it would be a somewhat shoehorned-in romantic subplot between Dias and a Pictish woman named Arianne (Imogen Poots). But even this element isn’t bad, exactly, because Poots and Fassbender have chemistry and because the film’s resolution works better than it would have had that particular subplot been cut.

Centurion exemplifies a seven on my scale. I can recommend it without qualification, but I also never need to see it again. It’s a good movie. And that’s all it is.

7/10 Good

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 02, 2011 2:04 am

http://brycevankooten.wordpress.com/2011/04/01/time-to-review/

CENTURION: 6.15
Ironically, another Michael Fassbender movie. It was fun. And I watched it after VALHALLA RISING … So naturally, it was a 6.15/10 masterpiece.


_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 09, 2011 1:11 am

http://urfz.com/2011/04/08/my-take-centurion-2010/

My take: Centurion (2010)

Title: Centurion (2010)
BD-50 Dual-Layer Disc
Video: 1080p/AVC
Audio: 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Subtitles: English and Spanish
Run time: 97 minutes
Studio: Magnolia Pictures
Rating: R
Region Coding: Region Free
Equipment used for review: Sharp LC-46SB57UN 46" 120Hz 1080p LCD (24fps), Onkyo TX-SR606 7.1 Receiver, Onkyo SKS-HT540 7.1, & LG BH200 Super Blu

Cast/Crew Info:
Michael Fassbender as Centurion Quintus Dias
Andreas Wisniewski as Commander Gratus
Dominic West as General Titus Flavius Virilus
Noel Clarke as Macros
JJ Feild as Thax
Lee Ross as Septus
David Morrissey as Bothos
Ulrich Thomsen as Gorlacon
Paul Freeman as Governor Julius Agricola
Liam Cunningham as Brick
Dimitri Leonidas as Leonidas
Riz Ahmed as Tarak
Olga Kurylenko as Etain
Directed by Neil Marshall

My take: (the breakdown)

I enjoyed Doomsday from Marshall a couple years ago so I decided to give Centurion a rental, but sadly it just doesn’t compare. Quintas Dias is a soldier of Rome and is deployed in Britannia, where the front has been stagnant for years. When his outpost is raided he is captured by a group of barbarians known as the Picts. He then escapes, hooks up with the Ninth Legion, but when the legion is ambushed by the Picts he and a group of survivors must fight their way back to their own lines. With a ruthless Pict tracker on their tales will the group of men be able to make it back with their lives? I’ll be honest that this plot is paper thin and full of holes, but the action is worthwhile. If you want a mindless sword and blood flick then give this one a rental. Due to bloody violence this one is not for children of any age.

Centurion arrives on Blu-ray with a faithful transfer that is largely well done. Colors are well saturated although most of the palette looks intentionally muted, which is to understood as the story takes place during the winter months. Flesh tones are accurate without any noticeable problems. Grain is light to moderate and never becomes noisy, even in the darker scenes. I did notice a few unresolved blacks as well as some softer wide shots, but these are relatively minors complaints. On the whole I was rather pleased with this transfer from Magnolia.

Even more impressive than the film’s transfer is its 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track. In the first 10 minutes of the film you’ll be impressed with the bombastic nature of the mix. Dialogue is clear for the most part, but I did find it slightly difficult to hear softer spoken lines on a few occasions. Surround usage is impeccable whether it’s a massive battle sequence on screen or the ambient sounds of nature. Additionally, the sub gets a serious workout from the LFE during several scenes in the film so be prepared for that. This is definitely one of the better 7.1 mixes I have heard on the format.

The provided supplemental package for Centurion is rather average and the strangest thing is that most of it is actually in SD. First up is a feature length audio commentary with Marshall and several members of his crew, which is actually fairly interesting. Next is a 26 minute making of documentary, but it’s nothing special. Next up are six deleted scenes totaling eight minutes. Next are four making of features that include the following: 25 minutes worth of interviews, an 11 minute fluff piece, six minutes of outtakes, a four minute interview Marshall and Fassbender hosted by HDNet, and a photo gallery. There’s also a Digital Copy included available via download. I would have given this package higher marks, but since all of these features are in SD with the exception of the HDNet interviews, I decided to count that against it.

Movie: 6/10
VQ: 8/10
AQ: 9/10
Supplements: 5/10
Final Word: Worth A Rental

As always thanks for reading folks.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 09, 2011 3:29 pm

http://www.chekyang.com/musings/2011/04/09/centurion/

Apr 09
Centurion

Centurion (2010) – on rental. I’m always a big sucker for historical dramas, especially that centered on the ancient Roman civilization. Centurion was released last year in theatres here, but I gave it a miss on account of that early reviews of this Brit film were decidedly mixed.

The film spins what seems to be a mostly fictional yarn on what might have happened to one of Caesar’s most famous legions – the Legion IX – which according to the historical account, vanished in Caledonia (where Scotland is today) at about AD117, approximately 60 years after Caesar’s death. Historians have speculated possibilities that include that the Legion simply disbanded, or that it was swarmed and obliterated by the Pictish hordes. Centurion goes with the latter scenario, depicting the Legion’s massacre in full, bloody and gory fashion – and no this really isn’t a spoiler as elements of this is shown in the film’s public trailers. The original thought in the film though goes entirely in its story of a small band of Roman survivors of this massacre, and their attempts to reach back friendly lines through Pict-controlled territory.

We’re introduced to the key players early on. There’s Quintus Dias, played by Michael Fassbender, a Centurion with the Legion who’s deployed at an outlying outpost that gets overrun early on in the movie. There’s General Virilus, played by Dominic West pulling a cross between Russell Crowe’s Maximus and Gerald Butler’s Leonidas, the charismatic and very skilled commander of the Legion, and Etain, a female Pitish scout with a hidden agenda played by Olga Kurylenko. This lead cast is supplemented by a small band of supporting actors playing the other Roman survivors and pursuing Pict warriors, most of whom are relative unknowns but they all look reasonably distinct so that when the body counts start clocking in, it’s at least possible to easily tell who’s dead and who’s left.
blog-centurion-2

Body count... 1,403... 1,404...

The film was shot on location at the United Kingdom, and uses the magnificent backdrops to full advantage. There’s obvious CG in a couple of spots that clearly look manufactured when they show up on screen, but putting aside also the fact that the story takes place in early winter and the limited color palette that results from that, for the most part the film looks gorgeous. The action scenes, especially important since the film is really more an action than historical piece, are a mixed bag. There’s scale, especially the violent confrontation early on in the film showing the Legion’s demise for all their superior training and tactics. It’s also very violent. Expect to see lots of ways to get killed with sharp objects. Unfortunately, a lot of the fight and combat scenes are steady-cam shot with a lot of quick cuts. It was mildly migraine-inducing, and very difficult to follow fights in the encounters involving more than a few persons at a time.

There’s not much to say about the story. There isn’t a lot of subtlety, characterization is reserved only for the three leads and there isn’t a lot of it even then, and loose story ends are tied up by the end of the film’s very economic run length of 97 minutes.

In all, a very average film and watchable as long as you see it for what it is; an unsophisticated action film set against a historical incident.

3/5

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 09, 2011 3:36 pm

http://ghoulsonfilm.net/?p=2298

Apr 09
‘Centurion’ – Horror Inspired Action
Posted by Severine

This is, apparently, the week where I watch movies made by directors I normally dislike.

First there was Zack Snyder’s “Sucker Punch.” I’ve already written about that and the less said, the better. Next came Neil Marshall’s latest film, “Centurion,” which is currently streaming on Netflix. To my brain, streaming = free, so I figured, why not kill time at 2 a.m. when insomnia is raging and I can’t think of anything better to do?

I was surprised at how much I liked it. To say it’s a great film would be a stretch, but Michael Fassbender is always entertaining to watch (and easy on the eyes, to boot) and I was mostly relieved that it doesn’t play out as the British version of Gladiator. With a name like Centurion, it’s pretty damning from a marketing standpoint.

The film concerns Quintas Dias, a centurion who has to run for his life when his garrison is decimated by Picts. He comes across the Ninth Legion, a bunch of bad ass soldiers who are charged to defeats the Picts once and for all because a senator is attempting some tricky political maneuvering. Somewhat unpredictably, the Picts demolish the Ninth and take their general (Dominic West) captive. Dias assumes command and attempts to rescue the general, only to realize that the Romans are way out of their league.

The gore and violence is the strongest part of this film and is obviously made by a horror director. There are a number of good performances by actors who are, for once, not overacting in a period action film. Two of the most bad ass characters are women. The sexy Olga Kurylenko plays Etain, the almost unbeatable villain with a tragic back story. She was great in “Quantum of Solace” and is pretty awesome here, too.

With that said, it isn’t a perfect film. The dialogue flounders when the characters aren’t either running for their lives or engaging in battle. But it is quickly paced and entertaining overall.

The real mystery is how I enjoyed this as much as I did.

I’ve seen almost every Neil Marshall film and hated all of them. “Dog Soldiers,” “The Descent,” “Doomsday.” So on and so forth. I disliked all of these films because Marshall attempts to rework genre conventions, but doesn’t have the budget or script to do so. I know a lot of people love “Dog Soldiers,” but I found it awkward and plodding.

“Centurion” overcomes by not trying to do anything new – it’s just an entertaining action film with beautiful scenery and some crazy fights. My conclusion: Neil Marshall is better when he’s inspired by horror, not making it directly.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:45 am

http://esrose.blogspot.com/2011/04/pict-flick-todays-film-was-centurian.html

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

PICT FLICK

Today's film was

The Centurian (2010)

They say that there are only 13 movie stories and this is certainly one of them.

Add the 300 possible wrinkles on one of the 13 stories and you have many possibilities. That doesn't mean you can hide the formula underneath the action.

Here we have the troop that is cut off from the main forces in a guerilla war that no one is trained to conduct, in a strange land that no one understands and under political conditions that favor myth over reality.

The group has a token this and that, even a black guy who is not a Roman they say, but still, and a Judas figure who kills, well, (spoiler!!!) actually the black as it turns out so we even have the black card played.

I do not mean to be cynical because this is a good, but not great, variant on the theme and is shot and cut for quite a different look and emotional feel. Made in Britain with a British cast, there is a bit of the old English history here too. To say nothing of the old British sense of decorum at times.

The guerillas are, well we learned about them in school, the Picts! Christ all, I have never seen a Pict movie before. And sure enough there is a woman who is the main hunter of the Roman men who are cut off from the main forces. And to balance her there is a good woman, a witch, in the woods who is into the mix as a break in the action, a little sex and a point for a pivot later in the film.

There I go. Being cynical again.

Here is the thing. Michael Fassbender is really good as the centurion and I don't mean just under the shirt. He has quite a load to carry and he does it well.

I was on my seat edge through most of it and, here is the thing, it has some of the most gruesome goddam head slicing, delimbing, eye gouging grand guignol blood and thunder you will see outside a slasher film.

I will give it a 3 out of Netflix5.

Labels: films

// posted by esrose @ 2:28 PM

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sun Apr 17, 2011 4:17 pm

http://reviewsfromtheabyss.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/centurion-i-will-not-yield/

Centurion: “I will not yield!”
By rosstheboss56

Neil Marshall has done it again! As the director of one of my favorite horror movies, The Descent, I had to check out this director’s 5th attempt at directing. After taking a peek on IMDB at Marshall’s other directing attempts, I saw another two movies I found were right up Marshall’s alley when it comes to genre and style, Doomsday and Dog Soldiers. The movie posters alone look like movies I would gladly see. (I had heard of Doomsday before, it’s shown a lot on FX, definitely going to check it out now.) This movie doesn’t disappoint and it gives one of those quick in and out glimpses into the world of the Romans during a time of war. If I had to say it, which I will (I mean come on, there are 2 actors in this movie who were major players in 300) this movie is on some sort of level with Gerard Butler and his 300.

But what I liked about it? It wasn’t Gerard Butler. Come on, you have to give it up for how creatively mind bending 300 was. I love Zack Snyder. Plain and simple. 300 brought a new meal to the table. But yeah, this movie wasn’t quite 300 at all. It was almost a 300 meets Gladiator fusion. Quite spectacular. Instead of Butler, we have one of the new and upcoming British actors, Michael Fassbender. This guy is putting in the work and getting

Michael Fassbender

great results (and I’m not talking about his abs in 300). He’s done quite a few British T.V. shows and made his big break with 300. (He was that guy that cut off the emissary’s arm and told that fool they would fight in the shade.) Inglorious Basterds (I’ll give it to you Tarantino, this one time…) and Jane Eyre, this guy has range. And most excitingly, he will be playing Magneto in this summers sure to be masterful hit, X-Men: First Class. I expect good things from this guy.

Other notable appearances in this film? Dominic West, of course. Another 300 familiar, this guy was the traitor. But still, he was great. I loved his alter ego in Meet the Spartans, Traitoro. Dominic West has done some good work

Ah, Traitoro

as well, and I feel that as a fellow British actor to Michael Fassbender, he will go great things one day. He’s done wonderful things on The Wire, and he did one of my favorite guest appearances in my favorite part of the Hannibal Lecter series, Hannibal Rising as Inspector Popil. He has quite the list (Palace Guard in Phantom Menace???) and should keep strong for years to come.

Also, what I like about movies like this? Neil Marshall can get together a rag-tag group of virtually not well known actors, and still make a badass film. Noel Clarke (one of the Doctor’s helpers on Dr. Who) plays Macros, the slave turned athlete who really just runs the entire movie. JJ Feild (recurring British T.V. period piece actor) as Thax, one of my favorite characters in this film. David Morrissey (character actor who seems to switch between

A rag-tag, cantankerous crew

American and British film) as Bothos, the slightly obese centurion who’s that one loyal friend, but not that ridiculous. I mean, the list goes on. But that’s what really appealed to me about The Descent. It brought together a handful of unknown actresses and turned out to be a really well made film.

Complaints. Okay, there are quite a few archers in this film. And you know what happens? Everyone of them can aim for someone’s head and hit them directly, no hesitation, no mercy. This is a bit ridiculous. I find it hard to believe that every archer in this film is Robin Hood. But to each his own. It still made for pretty amazing gore throughout the film that was just nonstop. One whole scene about 20 minutes in is just literally unheard of. Another thing, I have never heard the “f” word so much in a period piece film like this. It is out of place. Distasteful right there.

Everything else about this movie? Great. It had great cinematography and looked like it took cues from The Lord of the Rings in its overhead helicopter shots of men dashing across snowy mountains. (Pretty sure this was shot in New Zealand.) The locales were quite spectacular although you couldn’t really place what was going on. If I related it in plot to any movie, it would’ve definitely been a mirror image of The Descent. Actually, the more I think about it, it’s like a cookie cutter version of The Descent, just different time and characters. Wow. If Neil Marshall does this again though, I might not be so forgiving. You can’t hope to make 3 identical plot movies and think people won’t notice. But taking Centurion as its own tour de force of mayhem and devastation in the time of the legion and Rome, it really does not yield. 7.7 out of 10.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Tue Apr 26, 2011 2:31 pm

http://neofilm.wordpress.com/2011/04/26/centurion/

CENTURION

2010

9/10

DIRECTOR: Neil Marshall

The Romans are back, but not like we’ve seen them before. This is the first of the two films which have come out over the past year which has dealt with the disappearance of The Ninth Spanish Legion in what is now Scotland in the run up to the building of Hadrian’s wall.

The second, is The Eagle, which is an adaptation of the 1950′s novel, The Eagle Of The Ninth which is more of a boy’s own adventure about the son of the Roman General in charge and his quest to recover the Eagle, the standard of the legion. This is NOT about that. This follows the demise of the legion at the hands of Pichish warriors, or the Scottish as they’re now known.

This is an about turn, showing the highly skilled, professional Roman army, defeated at the hands of the British, who after years of brutalisation at the hands of the Empire, have become guerillas or terrorists for all accounts. The political parallels aside, this is a believable concept to start our film with, as was the attitude of the army themselves.

They take the view that they were hungry for battle, brutal and professional soldiers to the last, with skills, zeal and courage, the exact attitudes that we have come to expect from more modern troops. Is this accurate? Who knows? But it works, as does the use of modern cussing and turns of phrase as the remaining Romans are running for their lives, heading towards the safety of occupied south.

The eponymous Centurion will be Michael Fassbender, Quintus Dias, who after being captured in a raid in the opening minutes, manages to escape and rejoin his legion, the fated Ninth. The few surviving Romans, a mixed group of Centurions, a Marathon runner and a Cook, make their way across the harsh terrain of the highlands, shot beautifully but Marshall, whist under attack from the Picks, wolves and the elements.

The brutality of the film is appropriate, but slightly over done, especially as for the blood which is gushing and spraying throughout, but this is about right for the type of fighting and weaponry of the time. Centurion does not pull its punches and rightfully so. It’s Romans running for their lives and the Britains hunting them down to last man. Both sides have their reasons, both sides have a point, but obviously, we’re supposed to sympathise with Romans and it’s not hard to do.

For a British action film, this is about the best I’ve seen in years, including every element you’d expect to find in any U.S. equivalent, The casting was good, not perfect but Fassbender was the solid heart of the film, delivering an interesting narration as well, made up a mix of classical literary tomes littered with modern terms, many of which containing casual swear words. The skill and detail put into the character’s motivations and knowledge was first-rate, and lent weight to believability of a film which was as much a story with flights of fancy as it was an accurate portrayal of Roman’s and Britains of that time.

Enjoyable, fun, but dramatically told and I suspect that this will stand the test of time. Well done Neil for finally giving me a British film worth shouting about.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 26th, 2011 at 1:52 pm

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Fri Apr 29, 2011 6:57 pm

http://limecello.wordpress.com/2011/04/28/security-blankets-the-shred-and-sadnes/

Security Blankets, The Shred, and Sadness

April 28, 2011 by Limecello

So I’ve taken to watching Michael Fassbender movies while doing mundane tasks that require me to be stationary. Generally, I watch Centurion. I’ve seen it maybe five times now. I think we can all say MF is my current celebrity crush. I think there’s comfort in routine, and the added bonus of me not having to pay close attention to the screen. That, and Centurion is one of the few movies MF stars in pre-Jane Eyre where he doesn’t die. >.<

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Fri Apr 29, 2011 10:48 pm

http://www.filmchronicles.com/centurion/

CENTURION
PATHE
RELEASED 23 April 2010

Neil Marshall directs this film as if he’s learnt nothing from his previous endeavours. Starting off the noughties with some nice, small-budgeted films, ‘Dog Soldiers’ and ‘The Descent’, the prospect of a larger budget and a director who seemed interested in staying in the UK should have brought dividends, but the wholly woeful ‘Doomsday’ in 2008 didn’t deliver. ‘Centurion’ has many of the same problems.

A predilection towards bloody gore and tight camera shots marks all of Marshall’s films thus far, and where the low-budget horror of ‘Dog Soldiers’ and the underground setting of ‘The Descent’ used these to their advantage, ‘Doomsday’ and to a greater extent ‘Centurion’ are shackled by them. With ‘Centurion’, which takes place across the English/Scottish border of Roman Britain, the vast and beautiful scenery should be a character in itself, an inhospitable place of snow and hardship, where the Romans were finally beaten by the Picts and where the Roman Emperor Hadrian built a wall.

We do get the occasional beautiful landscape shot, but we’re thrown back too soon into close-ups of soldiers running and fighting. And sadly, there’s not much going on otherwise.

For all its faults, the actors, while not having a great deal to play with, are decent. Michael Fassbender (‘300’, ‘Inglorious Bastards’) is slowly becoming a leading man, and even though his lead role here as the Centurion of the title has little back-story, he does at least have a back-story. As the son of a gladiator who won his freedom in the Coliseum, his story should have been of a son trying to overcome the legend of his father, something that’s hinted at but never explored. The rest of the cast get a much rougher deal; throwaway lines hint at how characters came to Britain, but that’s their lot. The one thing I do know from this film is that Fassbender can run, because that’s what he mostly does throughout.

Another exile from ‘300’ is Dominic West (also ‘The Wire’), who is wasted as the Roman General who gets lulled into a Pict ambush, where the 9th Legion are decimated and which begins the film, with the remaining legionnaires fleeing back to safety while being hunted by a band of Picts out for revenge.

The rest of the cast are a decent slice of British actors from ‘Doctor Who’ exiles Noel Clarke and Neil Morrissey to Paul Freeman as the scheming governor of Britain. Two women break into the all-male cast of fierce Roman and Pict warriors, with former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko as the mute Pict guide Etain and Imogen Poots as the Pict witch Arianne. Poots continues her small but worthy supporting roles as seen in ‘V For Vendetta’ and ‘28 Weeks Later’. Here she is the heart of the story and again her back-story hints at what could have been.

In a film of missed opportunities, her and Fassbender stand out as great losses. Both have the makings of great British stars, as does the composer Ilan Eshkeri, whose work (like his ‘Stardust’ and ‘Kick-Ass’ material) really stands out.
Lets hope that Marshall, who has the makings of a decent director, steps back away from his camera, figuratively and literally on his next project. ‘Centurion’ feels like empty promises and a lack of thought and planning.

PAUL FORRESTER

TWO OUT OF FIVE

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Sat Apr 30, 2011 5:36 pm

http://garylongden.wordpress.com/2011/04/30/centurion/

Centurion
Posted on April 30, 2011 by garylongden

This came out at around about the same time as Kevin MacDonald’s “The Eagle”, based on the same historic incident, the disappearance of Rome’s 9th Legion in what is now Scotland. Nothing is known of the circumstances of their demise, so Director Neil Marshall has free rein to interpret the event. Yet the plot elements bear some similarities with MacDonald’s interpretation. Marshall is best known for his horror films “Dog Soldiers” and “The Descent”, so unsurprisingly the rawness and gore of ancient living and battle is of particular interest to him. No battle scene is complete without graphic gouging, decapitation and limb severance.

The Scottish countryside provides a magnificent visual backcloth to the film and the opening Pict assault on the Roman outpost is visceral and sets the standard for the subsequent battle scenes. The sole survivor, Quintus Dias(Michael Fassbender) then joins the 9th Legion to put down the Pict Rebellion only to suffer the Legion itself being all but wiped out in the stand-out scene of the film, a Pict ambush in a wooded valley. They are led into the ambush by a treacherous female Pict scout, Etain. However the dramatic impact of her role is limited by the fact that she is mute, having had her tongue ripped out by the Romans .

A handful of Romans survive the ambush and learn that their General has been captured by the Picts which provides the pretext for an attack on the Pict camp. But they fail to free the general, murdering the Pict leaders son in the process which unsurprisingly has the Picts hunting them down with Etain in the lead. Two elements hinder this film, as they did “The Eagle”. The Pictish language is sub-titled which restricts how much you can include for character development (which is negligible on the Pict side) and secondly an open landscape with overwhelming odds in favour of the Picts restrict dramatic tension considerably.

The film is almost entirely plot driven, with very little characterisation. This is a shame because when it does draw breath, when Dias and his men find shelter and support from a Witch, the story takes on a welcome extra dimension and it provides a satisfying coda to the plot. Overall, “Centurion” was not that well received by the critics. Apart from the ambush scene, it lacks the grand epic quality of “Gladiator” and the story is scarcely enough for 97 minutes. Michael Mann’s interpretation of “Last of the Mohicans” set a modern day standard of “heroes on the run in the wilderness” which all subsequent pretenders find hard to beat. But what it does do, it does well, bloody combat scenes. And these are sufficiently well done, and frequent enough to make it enjoyable enough .

The head to head comparisons with “The Eagle” are interesting. “The Eagle’s” opening scene and fort assault are better, and the use of a local slave as a guide whose loyalties are in doubt far better handled as a story. But once it gets going “Centurion” is far stronger as the legion marches north, and the set piece battle wins hands down. “The Eagle” is stronger in the Pictsish camp, but the “Centurion” wins in the final pursuit with a more satisfying ending.

Because so little is known about British history other than from Roman sources historical accuracy is not an important factor, but a plot problem is. The Romans are the invaders and when the heroes are the ruthless aggressors an audiences sympathy, especially in the united Kingdom, will be at best divided. Combine this with sketchy character development and you have a story which should be enough to satisfy the “blood and splat” enthusiasts, but disappoint those hoping for a little more.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Mon May 02, 2011 4:31 pm

http://www.angus-donald.com/news/centurion-a-great-gaelic-gore-fest/

Centurion: a great Gaelic gore-fest

Posted on Monday, May 2nd, 2011

Occasionally, I am forced to recognise that I am fashioned from a different sort of clay from the rest of humanity: I’m a weirdo, an outsider, an odd-ball – well hell, one of my favourite songs is Creep, by Radiohead, which I think sums me up pretty well. The stuff I like is not the stuff that other – saner and more sensible – folks enjoy. But let me explain . . .

I’m talking mainly about my taste in films here. Couple of weeks ago I reviewed Ironclad – a fabulous, bloody, action movie set in the early 13th century, pretty much in my Robin’s historical time period, which I thought was excellent. I banged out a rave review on this site – which if you are reading this you may also have read – and thought no more about it until I was at dinner with a bunch of people the other day and this woman had a go at me for endorsing such a gore-fest. (She really wouldn’t like any of my Robin Hood books!)

I had a quick look online and found out that loads of other people had slated the film too. “Too bloody, not accurate, bad plot,” was the almost universal verdict.

Oh well, I thought. Guess I must be in a minority. (Shrugs)

Then I watched Centurion last night on Sky Plus – and thought it was fan-bloody-tastic! Romans and Picts chopping each other up good-style in the second century AD. Looked online, and found that almost everyone in the world except me seemed to have hated it. Well, I didn’t. I liked it a lot. Actually, I loved it. The director is Neil Marshall – who I would really like to make the film of Outlaw one day. He made one of my all-time favourite movies in 2002: Dog Soldiers. And Centurion is just as good as that wonderfully weird ‘n’ funny werewolf flick.

Centurion reminded me of another one of my faves – The Warriors – in which a bunch of 1970s New York gang-bangers have to get home to Coney Island across miles of enemy territory, with every other NY street-fighter/face-painted loony trying to kill them. If you take that plot and stick it in the Highlands of Scotland, c 117AD, you’ve got Centurion.

There’s other great stuff, too. Betrayal, a creepy witch or two, a love story, a “bad” good guy, a lot of barrack-room banter (that just occasionally jars a little) and loads of visceral, buttock-clenching violence. It’s a great movie: bloody, tough, moving, a little bit sexy (Imogen Poots – silly name, stunning girl – plays the love interest). Actually, it’s a stellar cast: Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds) is the Roman hero, the centurion; Dominic West (The Wire), plays the General of the doomed Ninth Legion – wiped out but for seven men who must flee for their lives across Scotland from the vengeful Picts. And Olga Kurylenko (the Bond girl in Quantum of Solace) who is the mute but implacable Pict uber-tracker with Braveheart make-up.

OK – enough: it’s on Sky Anytime just now. Check it out. And if you hate it, for God’s sake don’t rant at me about it. I’m not interested.

One more thing: I’m going to be appearing at the Colchester Oyster Festival and Medieval Fayre on June 4th and 5th as part of my summer road show; signing and selling my books from a little tent. Come along and say hi, if you’re going to be there; buy a book, fetch me a pint and a plate of oysters. I’ll be stuck behind a mound of books all day Saturday and Sunday and it would be nice to have someone to chat to. Here’s the website:

http://bit.ly/lR4AuZ

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Fri May 06, 2011 9:12 pm

http://m0vie.wordpress.com/2011/05/06/non-review-review-centurion/

Non-Review Review: Centurion
Posted on May 6, 2011 by Darren

I have to admit, I’m a bit disappointed with Neil Marshall. I’ll concede that I genuinely enjoyed Dog Soldiers and The Descent, while acknowledging their flaws. His movies have a tendency to start in the absurd and just keep amping things up until they get unbelievably ridiculous. Even the over-the-top and quite-crap-actually Doomsday still had a lot of energy to carry it through as it gleefully veered through camp straight out into uncharted realms of gratuitous nonsense. On the other hand, Marshall’s latest, Centurion, seems relatively tame. It’s fairly mediocre throughout, which perhaps seems less entertaining because it never has the energy to go too far. And that’s a bit of shame.

The last Fassbender?

The movie deals with the same events roughly covered by The Eagle – the “mysterious” disappearance of the Roman Ninth Legion in 108/9 A.D., following the popular theory that the legion got itself into a bit of bother trying to tackle the Picts up in Scotland. Of course, the explanation favoured among historians today suggests that perhaps the fighting force was just disbanded and reassigned, but that wouldn’t make for an exciting little Neil Marshall film, would it?

It’s interesting how the theme of Scottish nationalism expresses itself in Marshall’s work, both here and Doomsday. Indeed, Marshall’s earlier post-apocalyptic action fest feature a latter-day Hadrian’s Wall built to keep the Scottish out of England, leaving them to die of some random plague. They didn’t die, and instead reverted to lawlessness, resenting any attempt by their Southern neighbours to reassert their rule. In fact, that earlier movie opened when the English (now facing an infection all of their own) had to send a team up North to investigate why the Scots had proved too damn aggressive to allow themselves be destroyed by a mere apocalyptic disease.

Learn to Pict your battles...

This time around, the portrayal of the barbarians to the North is even more sympathetic. Like in Doomsday, the Scottish are portrayed as loud and aggressive, but here the movie hints that there are justifications. Using a rather obvious Iraqi war metaphor, we’re informed that the Picts are “using guerilla tactics and the landscape to their advantage”, being led by a man who was “a farmer until his wife was killed.” As the eponymous Centurion informs us, “This is a new kind of war. A war without honour. A war without end.” Indeed, when the reason for the Pict’s hatred of the Ninth Legion is revealed, we discover that a member of the war party is guilty of what today would be considered a war crime.

What we get is a functional little action movie, built around a bunch of Romans who end up leading a mission into Scotland that seems doomed to end in failure. Surrounded by the enemy on all fronts, our heroes find themselves fighting not only for their Empire, but for their very lives. What follows is a fairly functional “group under siege” movie, populated with unsurprising little twists and turns. In particular, there are several betrayals which make the Roman Empire look like a bunch of fools. Granted, one could argue that “group under siege” movies didn’t exist too much at the time of the Roman Empire, so they probably couldn’t spot the signs, but it’s all still very obvious.

Roamin' Romans Roamin'... Keep them Romans Roamin'...

Still, there’s thrills and spills and a relatively large amount of violence and gore, as one might expect from Neil Marshall. While the threshold is certainly higher than one might expect in your traditional historical action picture, it never reaches the levels of absurdity one expects from Marshall. This is undoubtedly a good thing, as it prevents the movie from ever becoming incredibly ridiculous (even as we watch Romans who look like they learnt combat from medieval movies rather than the Roman Empire’s military academy) – but it also makes everything seem oddly functional. As a result, the movie never has the chance to come off the rails, but it also doesn’t distinguish itself from its competition.

The cast is actually pretty awesome. Michael Fassbender is solid, even if he adheres to the rule which states that actors in Roman movies must have silly haircuts. He wrestles with some of the movie’s rather purple prose, which sound like we should get a shot or two of his character making notes in a diary between combat scenes. “Now she hunts Romans,” he remarks of a foe, before adding the redundant (but no less dramatic), “Now we are the prey.” When Fassbender’s character converses with the Picts, I was able to pick up some Gaelic in his dialogue, which perhaps explains why the Irish actor’s accent seems to slip a bit in those scenes, but he’s mostly really good. Also, I tend not to mind what accents Romans speak in since… well, they’d be speaking Latin. On the other hand, while Imogen Poots continues to have the most beautiful eyes I think I have ever seen on film, her Scottish accent is just a little dodgy.

Courage under fire...

That said, despite my fondness for Deadwood, I’m not sure the movie handles the whole “classical soldiers swearing like modern sailors” things that most modern and hardcore historical action movies seem to demand. It’s a good thing that the movie has Dominic West on hand to deliver lines like “when will people learn not to $%^& with the ninth?”, because other wise it would seem silly. On the other hand, even Fassbender can’t make “hopeless is the stuff of legend – and legend will get you laid” sound like it belongs.

So, Centurion is functional and efficient. It’s probably a bit tighter than most of Marshall’s other efforts, but I think it suffers from being too hemmed in. There’s a sense that things are being held back, or restrained, which isn’t a bad thing – because, to be honest, a balls-to-the-wall Neil Marshall Roman film really could go either way. But it certainly wouldn’t be just okay.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 3:46 am

http://www.samhawken.com/?p=5349

[REVIEW] Centurion
Posted on Tuesday, June 7, 2011 in Movies

Writer and director Neil Marshall is proving to be a difficult man to pin down. After starting his career with two well-received horror films (Dog Soldiers and The Descent), he rapidly shifted gears to deliver the very odd genre-mashup Doomsday which, among other things, paid homage to John Carpenter and George Miller. And now he’s delivered Centurion, a brutal but sometimes beautiful, historical adventure/drama that winds the clock back to CE 117, when Britain was still Roman and the northern edge of the Roman Empire terminated in what is modern-day Scotland.

Starring Michael Fassbender — as of this writing playing Magneto in X-Men: First Class and getting excellent reviews for his work — the only things Centurion has in common with Neil Marshall’s previous output is that it’s set in the United Kingdom, it’s technically proficient and it’s bloody as hell. Apart from that, Marshall has created something more in keeping with Braveheart or Gladiator than anything else. It’s definitely not what I would have expected from him after Doomsday, that’s for sure.

Fassbender is Quintus Dias, a Roman centurion assigned to the frontier in Roman Britain. At the outset of the movie his little outpost is overrun and, because he is able to speak the tongue of the native Picts, he is taken prisoner. After a session of torture at the hands of Pictish leader Gorlacon, he manages to make his escape and runs directly into the Ninth Spanish Legion, a Roman legion that has become infamous over the last (about) 2,000 years for one feat in particular. I’ll explain.

Sometime around CE 117, the Ninth Legion was dispatched from Eboracum, the Roman city that would become York, as part of a push into the Pictish highlands. As the film lets us know at the very beginning, the Romans and the Picts have been at low-level war for 20 years and the Romans are getting awfully tired of fighting a bunch of painted savages at the end of the world. So the Ninth Legion went to Pictish lands… and disappeared. Not a single Roman of the Ninth returned to tell the tale and after the legion’s vanishing the Romans pretty much gave up on trying to conquer the Picts and built a wall across the frontier. This is the famous Hadrian’s Wall, the remnants of which still stand today.

Back to the film. Though Quintus would much rather keep heading south to safety, he is seconded to the Ninth Legion in their quest for Pict blood. Only things go horribly wrong, and after a well-executed ambush the 3,000-member legion is wiped out almost to a man. Quintus and a scant handful of other Romans from across the Empire (an African and a Greek are counted among their number) are trapped in the northlands with thousands of angry Picts hungry for Roman blood. Their efforts to flee an overwhelming enemy composes the bulk of the movie.

Marshall shot Centurion entirely in Scotland and the cinematography is absolutely beautiful. I had no idea that Scotland had so many untamed wilds left, and Quintus’ group travels through what seems like all of them. The movie was filmed in the wintertime, as well, so there’s snow and bitter winds and cold, cold streams and rivers to deal with.

Large-scale scenery is contrasted with small-scale action. Most of the time we’re focused squarely on Quintus and the others, with occasional glimpses of the Pictish hunting party that’s after them. The Picts are led by a mute scout/warrior played by Olga Kurylenko with a smoldering hatred of Romans in every twitch of her face. It should be no surprise that the group is whittled down over time, though the exact manner I will leave for you to discover on your own.

The cast is all excellent. I would single out Liam Cunningham as a grizzled war veteran on his last tour of Britain and Dominic West as the leader of the Ninth Legion for particular praise, though no one gives less than his or her best. Michael Fassbender is an appropriately physical and good-looking hero, which may go a long way toward explaining why his star seems to be rising so fast. The character of Quintus Dias may be a touch too enlightened for the period, but that’s become par for the course when it comes to historical dramas in the last ten years, so I’m not complaining.

You may recall that I said Centurion was bloody. Well, I wasn’t kidding. If you’re at all squeamish, you should avoid Centurion at all costs. Throats are slashed, hearts pierced, heads hacked off with axes, faces split, legs broken… just about any abuse the human body can suffer is depicted in loving detail by Marshall’s camera. It’s the one thing that reminds you that you’re watching a Neil Marshall movie, because the rest is so markedly different.

The disappearance of the Ninth Legion is fruitful territory. I don’t know if you read my review for The Eagle of the Ninth back in March, but that book springs from the same legendary material. When 3,000 men vanish without a trace, we want to know why it happened and, in the case of Centurion, what went on afterward. There’s not a whole lot of narrative sophistication in Centurion — it’s essentially a chase movie — but it strikes right to the heart of the mystery.

It’s interesting to see how Marshall evokes the period, as well. If I can fault the movie on any major count, it’s that Centurion doesn’t do much to flesh out its Pictish antagonists. On the one hand we can infer that the Romans’ continued campaign against the Picts is a bad thing from which nothing good can spring, but on the other hand those Picts seem damned bloodthirsty, sometimes to the point of pathology (as in the case of Kurylenko’s character). So, yes, the Romans have brought their problems down upon themselves, but aren’t we supposed to sympathize with them? And if we sympathize, are we giving tacit approval to the things they’ve done up to that point?

Maybe that’s putting too much thought into it. You can credit Centurion for being the sort of movie that can provoke these kinds of questions, even as it can be dismissed as bloody, dumb entertainment. I didn’t find the film perfect by any stretch, but it held my attention and got my wheels turning, which is all I can ask for, really.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 4:11 am

http://www.samhawken.com/?p=5349

REVIEW] Centurion
Posted on Tuesday, June 7, 2011 in Movies

Writer and director Neil Marshall is proving to be a difficult man to pin down. After starting his career with two well-received horror films (Dog Soldiers and The Descent), he rapidly shifted gears to deliver the very odd genre-mashup Doomsday which, among other things, paid homage to John Carpenter and George Miller. And now he’s delivered Centurion, a brutal but sometimes beautiful, historical adventure/drama that winds the clock back to CE 117, when Britain was still Roman and the northern edge of the Roman Empire terminated in what is modern-day Scotland.

Starring Michael Fassbender — as of this writing playing Magneto in X-Men: First Class and getting excellent reviews for his work — the only things Centurion has in common with Neil Marshall’s previous output is that it’s set in the United Kingdom, it’s technically proficient and it’s bloody as hell. Apart from that, Marshall has created something more in keeping with Braveheart or Gladiator than anything else. It’s definitely not what I would have expected from him after Doomsday, that’s for sure.

Fassbender is Quintus Dias, a Roman centurion assigned to the frontier in Roman Britain. At the outset of the movie his little outpost is overrun and, because he is able to speak the tongue of the native Picts, he is taken prisoner. After a session of torture at the hands of Pictish leader Gorlacon, he manages to make his escape and runs directly into the Ninth Spanish Legion, a Roman legion that has become infamous over the last (about) 2,000 years for one feat in particular. I’ll explain.

Sometime around CE 117, the Ninth Legion was dispatched from Eboracum, the Roman city that would become York, as part of a push into the Pictish highlands. As the film lets us know at the very beginning, the Romans and the Picts have been at low-level war for 20 years and the Romans are getting awfully tired of fighting a bunch of painted savages at the end of the world. So the Ninth Legion went to Pictish lands… and disappeared. Not a single Roman of the Ninth returned to tell the tale and after the legion’s vanishing the Romans pretty much gave up on trying to conquer the Picts and built a wall across the frontier. This is the famous Hadrian’s Wall, the remnants of which still stand today.

Back to the film. Though Quintus would much rather keep heading south to safety, he is seconded to the Ninth Legion in their quest for Pict blood. Only things go horribly wrong, and after a well-executed ambush the 3,000-member legion is wiped out almost to a man. Quintus and a scant handful of other Romans from across the Empire (an African and a Greek are counted among their number) are trapped in the northlands with thousands of angry Picts hungry for Roman blood. Their efforts to flee an overwhelming enemy composes the bulk of the movie.

Marshall shot Centurion entirely in Scotland and the cinematography is absolutely beautiful. I had no idea that Scotland had so many untamed wilds left, and Quintus’ group travels through what seems like all of them. The movie was filmed in the wintertime, as well, so there’s snow and bitter winds and cold, cold streams and rivers to deal with.

Large-scale scenery is contrasted with small-scale action. Most of the time we’re focused squarely on Quintus and the others, with occasional glimpses of the Pictish hunting party that’s after them. The Picts are led by a mute scout/warrior played by Olga Kurylenko with a smoldering hatred of Romans in every twitch of her face. It should be no surprise that the group is whittled down over time, though the exact manner I will leave for you to discover on your own.

The cast is all excellent. I would single out Liam Cunningham as a grizzled war veteran on his last tour of Britain and Dominic West as the leader of the Ninth Legion for particular praise, though no one gives less than his or her best. Michael Fassbender is an appropriately physical and good-looking hero, which may go a long way toward explaining why his star seems to be rising so fast. The character of Quintus Dias may be a touch too enlightened for the period, but that’s become par for the course when it comes to historical dramas in the last ten years, so I’m not complaining.

You may recall that I said Centurion was bloody. Well, I wasn’t kidding. If you’re at all squeamish, you should avoid Centurion at all costs. Throats are slashed, hearts pierced, heads hacked off with axes, faces split, legs broken… just about any abuse the human body can suffer is depicted in loving detail by Marshall’s camera. It’s the one thing that reminds you that you’re watching a Neil Marshall movie, because the rest is so markedly different.

The disappearance of the Ninth Legion is fruitful territory. I don’t know if you read my review for The Eagle of the Ninth back in March, but that book springs from the same legendary material. When 3,000 men vanish without a trace, we want to know why it happened and, in the case of Centurion, what went on afterward. There’s not a whole lot of narrative sophistication in Centurion — it’s essentially a chase movie — but it strikes right to the heart of the mystery.

It’s interesting to see how Marshall evokes the period, as well. If I can fault the movie on any major count, it’s that Centurion doesn’t do much to flesh out its Pictish antagonists. On the one hand we can infer that the Romans’ continued campaign against the Picts is a bad thing from which nothing good can spring, but on the other hand those Picts seem damned bloodthirsty, sometimes to the point of pathology (as in the case of Kurylenko’s character). So, yes, the Romans have brought their problems down upon themselves, but aren’t we supposed to sympathize with them? And if we sympathize, are we giving tacit approval to the things they’ve done up to that point?

Maybe that’s putting too much thought into it. You can credit Centurion for being the sort of movie that can provoke these kinds of questions, even as it can be dismissed as bloody, dumb entertainment. I didn’t find the film perfect by any stretch, but it held my attention and got my wheels turning, which is all I can ask for, really.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Mon Jun 20, 2011 5:37 pm

http://www.deadendfollies.com/2011/06/centurion-2010.html

Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Centurion (2010)

Country:UK

Recognizable Faces:

Michael Fassbender
Olga Kurylenko
Dominic West
David Morrissey

Directed By:Neil Marshall

I don't know who of Benito Mussolini or Sylvio Berlusconi is to blame for that, but I cannot for the love of me take any interest in the trials and tribulations of the Roman empire. To me, they were always the quintessential villains, perpetually drunk on their own power and a lot of ale. Who could change my perception of this once unmatched power that ruled the civilized world with an iron grip? If anybody had a decent shot at this, it was Neil Marshall. The man behind the fly-by-night horror classics Dog Soldiers and The Descent attempted something quite different with Centurion. A historical action movie that attempts to break free of the historical epic cliché that Hollywood loves so much. I don't think the result comes anywhere near what Marshall expected, but it gets the job done. It's a gritty and honest movie about war, where everybody on the shooting set contributes. It's not "transcendent good" but it won't make you regret the ninety-seven minutes of your time you decide to invest. Neil Marshall doesn't do that.

Now, I said Centurion was an honest movie and I don't mean this in a pejorative way. It's not naive or unoriginal. What I mean by that is that Centurion doesn't take any shortcuts and explains the profoundly political nature of military disaster. If the Roman empire made such a spirited effort to conquer the land north of the Caspian Sea, is the result of a profound lack of communication between the decision-makers of Rome and the actual soldiers on the field. The Ninth Legion, that Neil Marshall takes for example in his movie, have walked deep into a land that belongs to the Barbarians. And when I say BELONGS, I mean it. They know and own every inch of the landscape while the Romans are blind and oblivious to the danger that awaits them. It also doesn't have that they are oblivious to all the blood that was spilled in the name of their expansion, because Gorlacon (Ulrich Thompson), leader of the Barbarian tribe has a chip on his shoulder about that. So Centurion Quintus Dias (Fassbender) and awesomely named General Titus Flavius Virilus (the even more awesome Dominic West) will have to serve for example for Gorlacon's blood vengeance, just because they were at the wrong place at the wrong time.

And serve for example they do. The Ninth Legion is decimated, General Virilus is made prisoner and the Romans are down to a handful of men, decided to make it out from behind enemy lines alive. It also doesn't help that Gorlacon has a special weapon, an mute amazon named Etain (Kurylenko) who had suffered the worst of the Roman savagery and is now hell-bent on making any broomstick-helmet wearing motherf@#$%! pay the price for what she endured. Olga Kurylenko is the Achilles heel of that movie. Since she has such an important, yet mute role, she has to be perfect. And she's not, no matter how hard she tries to be. That's the problem she had in Quantum Of Solace and it keeps tailing her in Centurion. She had that model habit of trying to be edgy and fierce all the time. She has the eyes of a dancer in a rap video, more than those of a soulless killer. Michael Fassbender does his best, but he is a little bit of a miscast. Next to the very charismatic and physically singular West (by that I mean he has a face you remember), he comes off as being a little hollow. Doesn't help that West delivers the best performance as a part of the support cast also.

Yeah, so the acting is a little all-over-the-place. So are some of the fighting scenes, especially the one-on-one combat scenes, where the editing gets so quick it's hard to understand what the hell is going on sometimes. A character will seem to get the upper hand on another one, right after being punched in the face multiple times. Things like that. Those are the two main flaws of Centurion. They are nagging issues, but not overbearing. It's a well-written movie with a strong art direction and a knack for not taking any easy decision. Neil Marshall makes the war as ugly as it gets and puts his main cast through hell, guts and bad weather. Yeah, I mean the surviving Romans could have been all named Anonymous Pawns and you would have felt bad for them either, because they go through so much s$#!. In the end, Neil Marshall is the shining star of the show, which I'm not sure is all good. His movie doesn't help me out to come to terms with the Roman empire at all. I'm still convinced that they were terrible people. But Neil Marshall is a good director that doesn't fall for the Hollywood system. At least not completely.

SCORE: 81%
Posted by Ben at 5:57 AM

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Tue Jul 05, 2011 12:21 am

http://scorethefilm.blogspot.com/2011/06/centurion-2010.html?zx=8089f2bfee85262f

Saturday, June 25, 2011
Centurion (2010)

Director: Neil Marshall

Starring: Michael Fassbender, Dominic West, Andreas Wisniewski, Dave Legeno, Axelle Carolyn

More info: IMDb

Tagline: Fight or die.

Plot: In 2nd-century Britain, Roman fighter Quintas Dias (Michael Fassbender) is the lone survivor of a Pictish attack on a Roman frontier post. Eager for revenge, he joins the Ninth Legion -- under General Virilus (Dominic West) -- and journeys north on a mission to destroy the Picts.



My rating: 6.5/10

Will I watch it again? Noop.

SPOILERS APLENTY!!!!!!!!

Ugh. I hadn't seen so much as a trailer for this. All I knew was it was about Roman soldiers behind enemy lines in Ireland or something and it's got Michael Fassbender in it, a cat I really dig. If it hadn't been for a few very poor cliche's, I'd be in better spirits about it and would consider giving it another go sometime.


The performances are fine along with just about everything else except for some liberties the story takes. For example...Etain (Olga Kurylenko) is a super-tracking killer extraordinaire. The only reason she existed, it felt, was to bring in the female audience. She's over the top and silly. Just look at her in her getup.


Whatever.

I do appreciate, though, how her character's story is resolved. Then there's the other girl, Aeron (Axelle Carolyn). She's the love interest of our hero, Quintus Dias (Fassbender). She's actually A-OK in my book except for how her character's story is resolved. More on that later.


I'm diggin' Fassbender with every new film of his I see. And Dominic West needs to have his own movie as the Roman general. He was fantastic and gave the most enthusiastic performance in the picture.


CENTURION suffers from quickly edited fight scenes but it's not nearly as bad is it usually is these days. It also has a character (I forget his name) who kills a child in order save the rest of his surviving Roman buddies (there's six in total including the one they came to rescue). Must they really make him into the one guy of their lot to be a bad person? They really went out of their way to do it, too. The only reason they did that was so that the film makers would have more than enough reason to have him killed off. Why? Well because he killed a kid and he can't be allowed to live. BULLSHIT! He killed that kid before he could scream and send the enemy down on them (they were in the enemy's camp, you see), which would mean all of their deaths. We'd have a short-ass movie if that happened. s$#! like this really pisses me off.


Then there's the ending where Quintas makes it back to the Roman HQ. He's the sole survivor of the 9th Legion and the leader and his wife think it would be best to kill him so that no one could know that the enemy slaughtered their top legion thereby causing a serious decrease in morale. OK, I'm down with that. I don't want to see Quintas die but maybe someone will step in and do something noble. Nope. They go to kill him and he gets the upper hand. After the deed, he's alone in the room with the leader's wife who asks him, "Where will you go?". He responds with, "Where I belong." and then bitch slaps her. For f&#!'s sake, really? This is Hollywood Bullshit 101 screenwriting and it stinks. Then Quintas goes back to that broad that lives in the woods and they lived happily ever after. I did rather enjoy the bitch slap.


So you might get the idea that I didn't like this picture. I did, but there are little bits and pieces that just cheese me off to no end that set my eyes to rolling. It also doesn't help that the last half hour of its 97 minutes lasts forever. I just can't take that kind of abuse which sucks because I'll watch ANY movie about ancient Rome...but that doesn't necessarily mean I'll watch it a second time.

Posted by scorethefilm at 4:00 PM

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:53 pm

http://www.razorfine.com/2011/07/dvd-reviews/centurion/

Centurion
Filed Under: DVD Reviews by Alan Rapp
July 5, 2011

Title: Centurion
IMDB: link

“In the chaos of battle, when the ground beneath you feet is a slurry of blood, puke, piss & the entrails of friends and enemies alike, it’s easy to turn to the gods for salvation. But it’s soldiers who do the fighting, and soldiers who do the dying. And the gods never get their feet wet.”

centurion-dvdCentered around the mysterious disappearance of the Ninth Legion from Britain the film begins with a raid on the furthest Roman outpost in the UK and the the fall of the Ninth Legion and capture of their General (Dominic West) who is betrayed by their Pict guide (Olga Kurylenko).

A handful of survivors (Dimitri Leonidas, Noel Clarke, David Morrissey, Liam Cunningham), a cook (Riz Ahmed) and a former Centurion prisoner (Michael Fassbender) must try and make their way back to the Roman lines before the fury of the Pict leader (Ulrich Thomsen) reigns down on them.

Bloody, violent, bleak, and paced within an inch of its life Centurion certainly isn’t for everyone. The entire film is basically one long chase scene as this handful of soldiers attempt to flee from an enemy that has sworn an oath to kill them.

The only brief moment of respite comes in the valley of a Pict witch (Imogen Poots) who offers them momentary shelter from their flight.

The special features of one this one-disc DVD include cast and crew interviews, production design galleries, deleted scenes, outtakes, four behind-the-scenes featurettes on the myth of the Ninth Legion and recreating the Picts, shooting on location in Scotland, the blood and gore of the film, and the special effect and stunt sequences. Also included is commentary by writer/director Neil Marshall, cinematographer Sam McCurdy, Simon Bowles, and Paul Hyett.

Centurion isn’t epic or grand. It’s dirty, bloody, and visceral, but fans of this type of film involving large battles and plenty of gore should enjoy themselves. Is Kurylenko ridiculous as the mute tracker with near supernatural powers? Sure. Is the outcome of the film all too easy to guess? You bet. But the pacing, visuals across the Scottish landscape, and a strong performance by Fassbender should be enough to keep your interest (at least for a single viewing).

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Fri Jul 08, 2011 10:46 pm

http://fieldingonfilm.com/wp/?p=1463

4) Centurion (2010) – Michael Fassbender again. This time he’s Centurion Quintus Dias, a legionnaire marching northward under the command of General Titus Flavius Virilus (Dominic West) and his Ninth Legion. Their orders are to destroy the “barbarians” and especially their leader Gorlacon (Ulrich Thomsen), but the “barbarians” get the jump on them and massacre everyone but seven of the soldiers; Dias being one of them. Against all odds, the men try to make it back home, but they are being hunted, particularly by the truly dangerous Pict named Etain (Olga Kurylenko). I really loved Dog Soldiers (2002) and The Descent (2005), and I keep hoping that writer/director Neil Marshall will make another good film. So I keep watching, and waiting … and being disappointed. Doomsday (2008), a mish mash of Road Warrior (1981) and Escape from New York (1981), was truly dire, and Centurion wasn’t much better. It attempts to solve the mystery of what happened to the Ninth Legion, and is a very rare film in that it puts Picts on the big screen. (I can’t think of another film that does.) It has some exciting, and very brutal, fight scenes; is a nice ensemble piece – with a standout performance by Liam Cunningham; has a few good quotes, and even has a lovely, gritty, dirty, blood-soaked look to it. But it commits the cardinal sin of being truly boring. I didn’t see it that long ago, and don’t remember much about it. A few scenes stand out, but otherwise, not worth the bother.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Admin on Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:08 pm

http://www.movietrailerreviews.net/home/index.php/2011/08/02/instant-watch-pick-of-the-week/instant-watch-pick-of-the-week-the-centurion/

Instant Watch Pick of the Week: Centurion
August 2, 2011 By Darth Kriss Leave a Comment


For this week’s Instant Watch Pick, I picked a film that isn’t a blockbuster. Hell, on Rotten Tomatoes it got a rotten score. So why is this my Netflix pick of the week?

It’s entertaining.

Let me set the scene. Last week I was laying around trying to find something to do. Nothing was on TV and I didn’t feel like playing anything on Xbox. You know what I mean, I was having a “lazy day”. So I hopped on Netflix and looked through my queue. I saw a lot of good things in there, many of which will probably be Instant Picks themselves one week, but nothing jumped out at me that would fill my need for an action flick that was mindless, violent and short enough that I wouldn’t fall asleep on it. Then I remembered Centurion was streaming and I said “What the Hell”. And honestly, I wasn’t disappointed.

Here’s what you get from Centurion:

Michael Fassbender – He was the best thing about X-Men First Class and he’s the best thing about this movie. He plays Quintus Dias, a Roman centurion who ends up trying to save the surviving members of the Ninth Legion from a group of Picts hunting them down. Fassbender doesn’t have much to work with here but he does the best he can.

The Violence – This movie is f#%@#&! violent. I’m talking 300 violent. People lose limbs like Kat Stack’s virginity at a rap concert. Plot and character development aren’t this movie’s strong suit, so seeing someone get their head split like a melon by an axe goes a long way.

It’s Short – It’s only an 1:36. Why is this a good thing? Because it moves quickly enough that its flaws aren’t glaring. You get a fast pace, bloody, violent film. By the time you realize the flaws in this movie, it’s over. It doesn’t try to bog you down with bullshit.

Now all that said, there’s a reason this movie didn’t get good reviews on RottenTomatoes. There’s virtually zero character development. Also some things happen in the film that leave you wondering what just happened and why. But again, this isn’t a review for a movie you’re paying to watch in the theater. It’s a Netflix streaming movie. So for the amazing price of $0 you can watch this when you’re bored or when you’re trying to get some work done and need action but nothing that will make you have to think. There’s something about watching a mindless movie from your couch that makes it way more enjoyable. Centurion is enjoyable for that reason.

_________________


Twitter: https://twitter.com/Fassbenderfans
Blogspot: http://mfmultiply.blogspot.com/
avatar
Admin
Admin

Posts : 27093
Join date : 2009-09-20
Location : California

Back to top Go down

Re: Centurion Reviews 4

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum