Information Exchange => Submitted Reader Reviews => Topic started by: Ted C on February 24, 2011, 11:01:40 AM

Title: Beowulf & Grendel (2005)
Post by: Ted C on February 24, 2011, 11:01:40 AM
Beowulf & Grendel
Rated: R
2 slimes
Copyright Company and Date: Movision 2005
Submitted by Ted C

Beowulf – Gerard Butler! Mighty Geatish hero come to save the Danes from the monster.
Hrothgar - Stellan Skarsgård! Redneck king of the Danes.
Selma – Sara Polley! Local witch and monster sympathizer.
Grendel – Misunderstood monster taking out childhood frustration on the Danes (who richly deserve it).

Trolls hold a grudge.
Trolls get the hot chicks.
Danes and Geats have Scottish accents.
Having your best warriors killed by a troll will give you religion.

Need to get the monster’s attention? Pee on its lair.
Grendel is so badass he has to cut his own arm off.

King Hrothgar: “As I recall, he also had a thousand swords, neighbors soft on wine and pork, and no ice on his rivers...”
Beowulf: “And no f-ing trolls.”

It didn’t completely suck, but it was neither “authentic” nor terribly clever.

A better title might have been the “The Vengeance of Poor Misunderstood Grendel Upon the Redneck Danes”. Seriously, the Danes and Geats act like a bunch of rednecks constantly dropping the F-word in Scottish accents. At least the rednecks are smart enough to wear their helmets when they go into a fight.

Grendel is vaguely like an adolescent taking revenge for a legitimate wrong. He lacks the supernatural invulnerability that helped define Grendel in the poem. He's just big, strong, and cunning in a neanderthalish kind of way. He's obviously meant to be a sympathetic character and quite frankly kicks the butts of Beowulf and everyone else he fights. He pwnez Beowulf and company so bad that he actually has to cut his own arm off so it can get nailed to the wall.

And then there’s the witch Selma, played by Sarah Polley, who helps the story by dropping hints about her friend Grendel’s motivations in an undisguised American accent.

Add in a disposable subplot involving a Christian missionary and a gratuitous visit from Grendel's mother, and you've got something resembling a story that doesn't very much resemble the classic Beowulf.