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Badmovies.org Forum  |  Movies  |  Good Movies  |  Apocalypto (2006) « previous next »
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Author Topic: Apocalypto (2006)  (Read 5272 times)
Scott
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« on: May 22, 2007, 10:51:11 PM »

APOCALYPTO (2006) - Wow, I just watched this tonight as it has come out on DVD today. This is much better than Mel Gibsons PASSION OF THE CHRIST (2004). Didn't think this would be any good, but turned out much much better than anticipated. I don't see were all the critics were coming from. There is new territory here in this film. This is a tough subject because of the lack of historical writing, but Mel Gibson creates a strange world that is worth seeing. APOCALYPTO had me totally engaged all the way through this over two hour feature. What I found interesting in the film was the closeness of the jungle tribe and the way the Mayan priest manipulate the people. We follow this jungle tribe from captivity to civilization and back again. Neat little ending here also. There is a lot of running through the jungle which isn't as bad as it sounds. All sub-titles. Both APOCALYPTO and ROYAL HUNT FOR THE SUN are very good each in their own way.

Thumbup Thumbup (8 out of 10 Stars)  Hollywood needs to attempt more like this. Well done.




« Last Edit: May 23, 2007, 09:28:40 AM by Scott » Logged

Ash
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« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2007, 01:39:56 AM »

I just rented this last night and I'm anxious to watch it.
I've heard the blood and gore is over the top.
Which makes it OK in my book.

Gonna watch Letters From Iwo Jima first.

I'll leave my thoughts after I watch it.
Thanks for the recommendation Scott.   Thumbup
« Last Edit: May 27, 2007, 02:01:28 AM by Ash » Logged
Scott
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« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2007, 09:27:40 AM »

I think you'll enjoy it Ash. Had dreams about it last night after viewing it.
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Pilgermann
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« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2007, 12:09:11 PM »

It's a gruesome film, but I think many reviews exaggerated the violent content.  There's some real substance in the film, but it also works very well as a simple action film, and it's not like action films should be tame.
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Torgo
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« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2007, 07:38:17 PM »

A friend of mine is supposed to letting me borrow this in a few days so I'll post my thoughts on it after I get a chance to watch it.
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soylentgreen
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« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2007, 11:07:22 PM »

It's a gruesome film, but I think many reviews exaggerated the violent content.  There's some real substance in the film, but it also works very well as a simple action film, and it's not like action films should be tame.

I've noticed the folks who say the film is over the bounds in gore tend to be folks who haven't actually watched many 'gory' films.  Yes, it's violent, but the violence is entirely within the context of the culture. 

As for the substance/action balance, you've hit the nail absolutely on the head there.  Simple, devoid  of celebrity distraction, you are free to immerse yourself in the gorgeous detail.



**SPOILER POTENTIAL BELOW** **SPOILER POTENTIAL BELOW** **SPOILER POTENTIAL BELOW**




The Dante's Inferno trip through the Maya city(from it's bleak outer areas rife with signs of exploitation and class degradation to the babylon-like city square) is the highlight for me.  That heartstopping(  Wink ) procession through the square and up the pyramid(James Horner's pounding percussion pushing on your ears).  The superstitious and easily manipulated masses falling for the chicanery of the ruling class and priests(sound familiar?).  That high priest is easily the most menacing film character in quite some time...and he isn't even technically a villain in the eyes of the city dwellers.

The most irritating noise I hear from critics(professional and ersatz) is to label it a MOST DANGEROUS GAME rip-off.  Uggghh.  Actually, it's much more strongly reminiscent of THE NAKED PREY...a film the studio weirdos MUST release on DVD soon(I can't even find that sucker at the conventions!).

I had to weather dozens of arguments with wikipedia-schooled experts over the mish-mash of Aztec and Maya ritual elements, pyramid structures, social scheme, eclipse totality durations...yadda yadda yadda...Man, I even had an argument over the goddamn villagers cenote...the goddamn CENOTE!   Forget any reasonable discussions about the ending.  Just impossible with the average audience member.  Yes, if you are an expert in mesoamerican history, things will stick out.  And Yes, if you're thoroughly familiar with the conquista, it'll irk you here and there(especially the finale).  But Dammit! if Gibson didn't do a solid job of bringing an entirely overlooked culture to life.  All the elements served a greater whole.  Almost like a fairytale...or better yet, a myth. 

His extended parable on the decline of a culture(theirs, OURS, whoevers) rings pretty clear.  Oh and I gotta give props to Raoul Trujillo who played Zero Wolf(the leader of the "bad guys").  What a presence this guy has.  This guys does more with his face alone, than Tom Cruise or most any other gruesomely overpaid celebritard can muster with their entire person.  Ok, maybe that's exagerrating it a bit, but this guy was good.

And as for Gibson himself...ppssssht**purses lips and blows!**...
Trust the art not the artist.  As a big fan of Wagner's work, I came to terms with the idea that not every great artist is a saint.


ps..be sure to keep an eye out for Waldo!  BounceGiggle
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Scott
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« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2007, 05:27:05 AM »

***********Possible Spoilers ************


My only part I had a little trouble with was the long run through the jungle. The man had an arrow that pierce all the way through and manages to outrun the man hunters, jumps off a high waterfall, makes it out of quicksand, and then he takes another arrow to the upper left chest. This chase scene last about 20 minutes which is OK because it has to do with the little girls prophecy, so the chase does work in this film, but the endurance of our main character is phenomenal.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2007, 09:55:57 AM by Scott » Logged

Torgo
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« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2007, 03:17:56 PM »

***1/2 out of ****.

While I don't care at all for Gibson's drunken antisemitic rant, I in most cases can separate an artist from his art in terms of personal life to what they end up doing as an artist.  Only in cases in which their art becomes an extension of their prejudices or problems in life do I then make a decision to not support/watch something.

With that said, I found Apocalypto to be riveting historical action film.  They screwed up by releasing this during last December. This would have been much better in terms of box office if they had waited to release it in late spring/summer.

The movie was marketed wrong to a certain degree.

I found all of the acting to be remarkable and the set design/locations were breathtaking.  You really feel like you're watching something that might have actually happened back during that ancient era.

And as for the supposedly over the top gore aspect of the film, I found it to be violent, yes, but gory, not really.  I thought that Mel Gibson showed quite a bit of artistic restraint with a lot of the heart removal scenes and the such.  He could have really rubbed the viewer's face in it which is how a lot of critics panned the movie as doing.  Lots of really, violent moments were filmed from a distance which actually made the violent moments more effective.

The only part of the movie that I thought was a bit of a fault was the little sick girl's prophecy. But I guess in the context of the story and what transpires, it works.

the movie could have been tightened up a bit which is why I can't give it a 4 star rating, but overall, I was thoroughly impressed. 
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soylentgreen
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« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2007, 09:48:40 PM »

I actually quite liked the scene with the sick girl.  It pivots the atmosphere from the lush forest environment to the wasteland of an unrestrained culture. 

I saw the film a few times in the theatre( yes, I was that guy  Wink ) and can say when you watch the film the first time, you 'ride the translations' the way you would any other foreign language film.  Though, APOCALYPTO's story is so broad and universal(not to mention fairly dialogue-lite)you almost don't need the translations.  BUT, the second(and subsequent) viewing....you can really glom onto all the gorgeous details literally filling any frame.  I was struck by some subtle and brilliant efforts by Gibson, his DP Dean Semler and his cast.

As I said, I'm pretty fond of the sick girl scene, but on seeing it again, I really dug the idea that as the little girl goes from being vulnerable and taunted by the passing Holcane warriors, begins channeling some deity and spinning out the prophecy, she begins dominate both the scene narratively.....


...and the warriors, physically(in the frame).  Her gradual shrinking into the distance and her voice fading into inaudibility as the warriors and their quarry move on, magnifies the sense of a culture that refuses to heed even obvious warnings.

A few other choice beauts'....


The diabolical syncopation of the lime quarry...somewhere between Fritz Lang and Godfrey Reggio.



Every gringo's nightmare...arrested South of the border.   Wink


I've been having this same dream for the last 7 years now.  TongueOut
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Ash
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« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2007, 05:47:05 AM »

This was pretty good!

I loved the opening scenes where they make that one guy eat Tapir balls and then laugh at him.

And especially the scene where Flint tells the same guy to rub those red leaves on his nether region before he bangs his wife to make him more fertile.
Only to see him come running out of his hut holding his burning balls!

Hilarious!

Those opening scenes really made me care about the main characters.

The final 3rd of the film is like Rambo.
Good...but still like Rambo.

And Scott...you're right about that arrow wound.
Especially when he sinks in quicksand.
All I kept thinking was, "That's gonna get infected."

The scene that I most remember from Apocalypto?

When that enemy raider jumps off the waterfall and cracks his head open on a rock.
OUCH!   Buggedout
« Last Edit: May 27, 2007, 02:03:40 AM by Ash » Logged
Scott
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« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2007, 09:24:36 AM »

It really makes you wonder what the critics were thinking when this came out it theaters. I didn't hear anything positive. Which is good I suppose because I wasn't expecting much and it turned out very good. Superb filmmaking. It's a hit for real film goers.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2007, 09:55:01 AM by Scott » Logged

CheezeFlixz
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« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2007, 11:42:37 PM »

I give it at least 4.5/5 I thought it was excellent. Sure they was areas that good be improved but doesn't every movie have that.
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The Burgomaster
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« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2007, 07:43:13 AM »

I bought this DVD a couple of weeks ago and have already watched it twice.  Surely the most entertaining and action-packed movie from 2006.
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Neville
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« Reply #13 on: June 12, 2007, 03:49:11 PM »

I saw it on theatres when it was released and loved it. The humour, the way we find out about their society as the main character does, thecinematography... all top notch.

Mu only gripe is that I couldn't really understand what the whole thing was about, what was Mel Gibson's thinking about it. Is it a movie about the end of a civilisation? OK, then why waste so much time in the chase? Is it a raw action movie? Then the first half goes for far too long.

Still a great film, and a very refreshing take on a genre (adventure films) that has seen better days.
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« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2007, 02:01:45 PM »

 If Mel Gibson hadn't made this who would have?  I thought it was amazing.  5 starsies.

that said,  the quote in the begining  about a culture falling from within didn't seem to make much sense in terms of the village being conquered.    Maybe it applied to ....something else.

I liked all the weirdos in the city.  and the fat kid on top of the stairs.

I don't doubt it was some sort of anaolgy for jews, homosexuals or some other paleo con paranoid fixation, but it was still cool.
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