A review of “Troy” by
Rating: R for nudity and
hours, 45 minutes
season’s testosterone treat is a cinematic triple-threat; a gritty historical
epic sparkling with entertainment value and beefcake.
they fought and how fiercely they loved, those inhabitants of Ancient
Greece. The kingdoms’ tenuous alliance,
based on nothing more than a wing and a prayer, is shattered when Paris, Prince
of Troy (Orlando Bloom) falls for legendary beauty Helen, Queen of Sparta
(Diane Kruger) and ignites a war that will ravage an entire civilization.
all-powerful and arrogant Agamemnon, King of the Mycenaeans (Brian Cox), is
affronted by Paris’
risky deed, declaring it an insult to his family honor considering that Helen
is betrothed to his brutish brother King Menelaus (Brendan Gleeson).
Agamemnon’s affront masks a monumental greed and an overwhelming desire to
ensure total domination of a vast empire.
walled city of Troy is Agamemnon’s target, its conquest
imperative for control of the Aegean and the
final piece of the puzzle that represents his dynasty. But Troy will
not topple easily, marked by the august leadership of dynamic King Priam (Peter
O’Toole) and Paris’
noble brother Prince Hector (Eric Bana).
shape in a hostile engagement extravaganza, a Trojan War uniting the massive
tribes of Greece to seize
Helen back from Troy. Enter renegade warlord Achilles (Brad Pitt),
the greatest warrior for the greatest war ever seen. The invincible Achilles answers to no one,
his allegiances reserved for himself and no other. He fights for his own glory,
but Achilles’ insatiable hunger for the spotlight induces him to duel for
Agamemnon against the mighty Trojan soldiers.
cheerfully reminiscent of the classic old-school epics, a Ben Hur for the new millennium. Borderline cheesy but fraught with emotion,
every frame packs a wallop of masculine energy.
The Greeks are bound by a common and simple credo – honor the gods, love
your woman, and defend your country.
Bearing that in mind, the fur flies fast and furiously as tribe goes against
tribe and will clashes with ego; all for the misguided love of a Queen and a
chapter in the annals of history.
abound in this ensemble gone wild. Cox
is thoroughly convincing as the ruthless Agamemnon, the ideal counterpoint to
Bloom’s callow and sensitive Paris. Kruger’s Helen may be the face that launched
a thousand ships, but she’s got the personality of a shipwreck.
A lot of
fuss has been made over Pitt as a Greek fashionista. He does a skirt proud, not
to mention a series of sexy after-hours caftans. His self-absorbed and conflicted Achilles is
magically delicious; cut and chiseled to a T, with golden locks and eyes that
speak volumes of tragedy and longing. But
belongs to Bana as the magnanimous Hector, a royal ruler of principle whose
fealty and loyalty (and sinuous biceps and doe-brown eyes) are the mark of a genuine
its hand a bit, as is to be expected when hosting a cast of computer-generated thousands.
Its vagaries of war are an all-too-timely commentary on the futility and
brutality of boys wielding toys.
Inspired by Homer’s The Iliad, the legend is loosely
re-envisioned to encompass a workable contemporary narrative.
Wolfgang Petersen, no stranger to bigger-than-life (Das Boot, The Perfect
Storm), offers up a well-crafted action-adventure with enough character
depth to generate intimacy amidst the chaos. What Troy
lacks in focus it makes up for in popcorn thrills.