I mentioned to my coworkers on Friday that I as planning on seeing Pompeii over the weekend. The story being about ancient world and in particular Ancient Rome is right up my alley. The first words out of their mouths were ‘oh I heard it got bad reviews’. Naturally my first words back were “well I don’t rely on other people to tell me whether something is good or bad. If I like the premise I’ll be the judge myself.” I just don’t understand people who only pay attention to reviews. If I did that then so many movies I love I’d have never seen. Plus I don’t understand why people feel they need others to make decisions for them. If I want to be told what to do I’ll listen to the critics if I want to decide for myself I’ll seek out educators instead.
Anyway I really liked Pompeii. I liked the premise probably because when I studied abroad back in 2002 at University I visited the site as well as Herculaneum (which btw is better preserved) and I saw on display there the plaster casts of the bodies archaeologists made from hollow spaces inside the hard volcanic debris that was left behind. The images were particularly disturbing due to the tragic circumstances but fascinating nevertheless. One particular plaster cast caught my attention - a soldier protecting a girl. I always thought it would make a great story for a book. Never got around to writing it….maybe I should have. I actually thought this movie was based on a book but I am wrong on this account so maybe I should write that book lol.
Despite a few historical inaccuracies such as Pompeii being situated on the coast, large fire boulders being hurled at the city from the volcano (pumice stone yes but that’s a softer volcanic rock), a giant tsunami, and young Roman women allowed to run around Rome unchaperoned, most of the movie was bang in its portrayal of ancient roman times especially on in terms of costume, architecture, gladiatorial games (with minor exceptions).
Pompeii is a love story between a slave/gladiator and a Roman. It is doomed from its start and anyone going into the show thinking that everyone lives happily ever after is either living under a rock and has no concept of history or is well to put it succinctly just plain stupid. It’s POMPEII for the love of gods!
I liked that the Milo character is Celtic. Most slaves tend to be Thracian or Gaulic. It was a nice change. Is Kit Harrington going to win an academy award for the movie? No. Let’s face it this was never going to be Ben Hur with Charlton Heston! Still Kit did a decent job portraying a gladiator plus his arms were lovely to look at I must say.
Cassia is a typical ancient Roman girl - bored, lonely and on the verge of being betrothed to someone older than her and not of her choosing. So when a hot young gladiator shows up at her family party of course she’s going to ditch old Roman Senator for him. Duh. Emily Browning is a good actress and did a lovely job trying to balance contrition and defiance as so many women in the ancient world did.
Making a lovely but brief appearance was Sasha Roiz as Procculus a Roman general. Have to say Sasha looked good in the costume but when doesn’t he look good?
Did I mention also that the film score is phenomenal? I will be purchasing this CD in the not too distant future <3
See Pompeii, don’t see it….it’s a movie about ancient world so what’s not to like about it?