BEOWULF

Anime, cartoons and 3D. Animated shorts and features. And don't forget the animation genius in Bulgaria.

With 10 being the best and 1 being the worst, how would you rate Beowulf?

10
2
6%
9
5
16%
8
7
23%
7
4
13%
6
1
3%
5
1
3%
4
2
6%
3
1
3%
2
1
3%
1
0
No votes
I'm waiting for TV/DVD
1
3%
I'M! NOT! INTERESTED!
6
19%
 
Total votes : 31

Beowulf - now W/100% more trailer....

Postby bastard_robo on Wed Sep 05, 2007 10:01 pm

I finally got to watch the new Hardcore trailer for Beowulf, and lets just say my pants are not dry!

If this trailer has shown me anything, is that this movie is seriously going to be my movie of the year!

Im a huge Beowulf fan. Since my teacher made me do a report on it in 7th grade, I fell in love with the story. If interpretations can be taken to the story, then its the ultimate macho story. A man, a mans man, coming to the aid of the defenseless, and killing a beast of unimaginable horror with his bare fucking hands! How macho is that!

Just the man vs monster was enough for me when I was younger, but theres just so much to this story.

And from the looks of it, the whole movie looks to finally capture that feel from the story!

The look is spot on too. I'm really liking MoCap! It hearkens back to the days of the Fleischer Superman cartoons.


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Re: Beowulf - now W/100% more trailer....

Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:57 am

bastard_robo wrote:The look is spot on too. I'm really liking MoCap! It hearkens back to the days of the Fleischer Superman cartoons.


Paisan, with alla due respect, it's a not even a close, eh?
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Postby C00L DUD3 on Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:50 pm

Aye, bastard...

Is this wise-guy giving you a hard time...

Dino, whats-a-da-matta, with you? Hahahaha...

I'm going to pass judgment on the MoCap, until I see it for myself in 3D or IMAX, at least.

I tend to prefer my pants dry...but I definitely liked it!!
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Re: Beowulf - now W/100% more trailer....

Postby Chairman Kaga on Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:52 pm

DinoDeLaurentiis wrote:
bastard_robo wrote:The look is spot on too. I'm really liking MoCap! It hearkens back to the days of the Fleischer Superman cartoons.
Paisan, with alla due respect, it's a not even a close, eh?

I think maybe he means MoCap reminds him of the Rotoscoping in the old Fleischer cartoons...Which is sort of an apt comparison.
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Postby Peven on Wed Sep 12, 2007 8:38 am

i like the newer trailer better than the first one released. i have not yet given up hope that this will at least be a cool saturday matinee kind of flick. plus, if people, including myself, can enjoy 300 with all its historical misrepresentation and inaccuracy (along with its own internal inconsistentcies) then i figure "Beowulf" might be enjoyable too even if it doesn't stick to the original translation.
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Postby minstrel on Wed Sep 12, 2007 9:06 am

I didn't think the new trailer looked good at all. It looked to video-gamish to me.

I'm still interested in the movie, but visually, it doesn't look like a home run. In the context of what's possible on the screen these days, and to stretch the baseball metaphor, it's visually a bunt single.

I really don't like the design of Grendel. Not exciting or terrifying at all.
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Postby Peven on Wed Sep 12, 2007 9:21 am

i give Zemekis credit for exploring and pushing the envelope with the mo-cap process. i also am not going to be too harsh until i see it they way it was meant to be seen, in digital 3-D on a big screen.
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Postby C00L DUD3 on Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:45 am

Yeah, someone's got to be the pioneer!!

I agree...I felt like this was going to be fun in a regular theater, but it'll look even better larger and in-your-face.

I'm gonna have to go IMAX/3D combo! I haven't seen anything like that since Cpt. E-O...lol!
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Postby Nordling on Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:47 am

Hey, not sure if anyone knows this, but did Tolkien ever translate BEOWULF?
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Postby Maui on Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:59 am

Nordling wrote:Hey, not sure if anyone knows this, but did Tolkien ever translate BEOWULF?


I had a gut feeling he did - but looked it up anyways. :)


JRR Tolkien was an acknowledged expert on the Old English heroic poem "Beowulf", the longest alliterative work surviving in that language. His best-known commentary on the poem is the essay "Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics", which was given as the Sir Israel Gollancz Memorial Lecture to the British Academy on 25th November 1936 and published in Volume XXII of the Proceedings of the Academy. The essay is available in reprint form, and as part of the collection JRR Tolkien: The Monsters and the Critics (HarperCollins UK, 1997).
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Postby Lady Sheridan on Tue Sep 18, 2007 3:44 pm

Tolkien never published a translation of Beowulf, just criticism. While he must have translated it for his own pleasure, clearly he never left a surviving version that Christopher could publish. Or maybe he always read it in the original and felt everyone else should too.

He did publish translations of "Sir Gawain and the Green Knight" and "Pearl," which are Middle English poems, but in the York dialect which is supposedly harder to read than Anglo-Saxon. That might be why he published those.

I wish he had published a Beowulf, it really would have been the standard schoolroom edition!
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Postby Nordling on Wed Sep 19, 2007 5:29 pm

I'd be very surprised if there wasn't a J.R.R. translation somewhere in Christopher Tolkien's basement.
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Postby Maui on Fri Sep 21, 2007 10:14 am

Nordling wrote:I'd be very surprised if there wasn't a J.R.R. translation somewhere in Christopher Tolkien's basement.


I guess I was wrong - it rarely happens. hahahah :roll:

It seems there's always rumblings that there is something out there by Tolkien re. Beowulf (more then his lecture/essay) and that some guy was going to piece it together - but then that rumour always gets squashed - who knows.

Like LS says - it sure would be nice to read a Tolkien translation of this poem.
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Postby C00L DUD3 on Sat Sep 29, 2007 8:19 pm

Lady Sheridan wrote:Tolkien never published a translation of Beowulf, just criticism...I wish he had published a Beowulf, it really would have been the standard schoolroom edition!


That's so interesting...I never knew that!?

I didn't get a chance to read Beowulf in school, and LOTR definitely came to mind when I learned of the film...who knew!!?!

I've gotten a lot of a "LOTR feel" from some of the previews that I've seen, as well.
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Postby Lady Sheridan on Sat Sep 29, 2007 10:24 pm

C00L DUD3 wrote:
Lady Sheridan wrote:Tolkien never published a translation of Beowulf, just criticism...I wish he had published a Beowulf, it really would have been the standard schoolroom edition!


That's so interesting...I never knew that!?

I didn't get a chance to read Beowulf in school, and LOTR definitely came to mind when I learned of the film...who knew!!?!

I've gotten a lot of a "LOTR feel" from some of the previews that I've seen, as well.


If you love LOTR, you should definitely pick up Beowulf and a collection of Anglo-Saxon poetry. Tolkien *loved* it all, and it is all over Middle Earth. :) The whole Rohan setting is one giant tribute to Beowulf in alot of ways. So was Smaug in The Hobbit.

This poem is familiar to anyone who's read or watched The Two Towers:

http://www.anglo-saxons.net/hwaet/?do=get&type=text&id=Wdr
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Postby C00L DUD3 on Tue Oct 02, 2007 2:58 pm

Cool! I'll check it out this week...

I think you're right, tho...it was definitely the "Middle Earth" feel that I received from what I've seen re: Beowulf, that reminded me of the Rings series...
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Postby junesquad on Sun Oct 28, 2007 1:15 am

I hope the movie takes longer to watch than to read.
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Postby tapehead on Sun Nov 04, 2007 4:37 am

[url=http://tinyurl.com/yvvau2[/url]Mori's review[/url] has certainly piqued my interest in this movie, and further got me interested in the new medium.
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Postby RogueScribner on Sun Nov 04, 2007 8:12 am

I wasn't really interested in this movie until Mori's review. Color me intrigued.
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Postby LaDracul on Sun Nov 04, 2007 8:23 am

Well, first of all, don't know if it's been mentioned, but it got toned down to PG-13. Restricted material is on the site, though.

Secondly, I'm surprised that Doug Chang (Star Wars Prequels) was the production designer. No mention of Gabriella Pescucci as costume designer, but I don't see much except for loincloths.

And thirdly, Grendel is scary. I thought he'd look like that comic book character that has the same moniker... He looks like Gollum contracted a flesh-eating virus.
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Postby Peven on Sun Nov 04, 2007 6:00 pm

there is an I-Max theatre about 45 minutes from me and after reading Mori's review i think i'll make the drive to check this out.
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Postby junesquad on Sun Nov 04, 2007 6:01 pm

Peven wrote:there is an I-Max theatre about 45 minutes from me and after reading Mori's review i think i'll make the drive to check this out.


I think I will be going to the IMAX if it makes an appearance...
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Postby Peven on Mon Nov 12, 2007 8:15 am

this question is for the real hi-techies we have here, like Tape and FG.....

is I-Max 3-D the same as digital 3-D? at the location of my nearest I-Max they are showing both the I-Max version and the digital 3-D, as well as a screen designated for a "normal" presentation. what i am wondering is if the 3-D quality will be as good in I-Max as the digital 3-D, or will i be sacrificing quality for screen size if i go with the I-Max?
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Postby unikrunk on Mon Nov 12, 2007 8:49 am

ged oudda my hed, Pevs!

We should try and catch the preferred 3D showing, once we know what that is.

After the movie, we can go fucking nuts at the lanes; you know how it is when you are all pumped up after a good action flick, and you take it out on something? Usually it’s driving really fast and that breaking boards and bricks with Agent Ranx. Ranx's movie ratings are based on how much stuff he destroys after watching the film. For example, "Complete destruction of private property" is about a 9/10.

Anyway, let’s do that, only to the bowling lanes; I hope you can handle unikrunk screaming "I am the teeth in the night!' every time I step up to bowl.
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 12, 2007 12:11 pm

Peven wrote:is I-Max 3-D the same as digital 3-D?


The Dino, he remembers that a the Chaka putz, he hadda the good description of a the Digital 3D system, eh?

Depending onna your particular 3D IMAX theater, it's a gonna to use one of a the two ways a to create a the 3D effect, eh? You gotta the traditional polarized glasses, or a you gotta the newer LCD shutter glasses, no?

The polarized glasses, they gonna to be inna'ferior by far, eh? A 'cos a you still gotta the two images being put uppa onna the screen atta the same a time, anna so's a you get a the ghosting, eh?

It's a my unna'derstanding that even though a the IMAX LCD glasses, they eliminate a the ghosting problem, you still have a the problem with a the headaches anna such a caused by a the "shutter" effect at a the relatively low shutter rate of a the 96 fps, eh? Cut a that inna half a for each eye anna you have a the effective "refresh" rate, iffa you will of a the goddamn 48 fps, which is alla kinds of a the slow anna causes a the strobing/shutter effect, which inna turn causes a the discomfort, eh?

Digital 3D alla the way, eh? NEW SCHOOL, BABY!!!
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 12, 2007 12:13 pm

Oh, anna this thing, she looks a like a the goddamn cut-scene from a the goddamn video game, no?

BWAAAHAHAHAH!! Zemeckis... what a the putz!
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Postby MasterWhedon on Mon Nov 12, 2007 1:49 pm

I saw this over the weekend at a 3D preview screening. Bearing in mind that I was naysaying this thing like whoa after seeing the awful/creepy trailers... this movie rocks. Like, to the point where my buddy and I both said it had the highest ratio of "Disinterest to OMG!" of any movie I've seen in a long time.

The long and short of it is, see this movie in 3D. I can't stress that point enough. The story is good and the filmmaking is strong--but they are both designed to highlight, and work hand-in-hand with, the technology. The movie will play fine in 2D, so if that's the only format available to you, it'll still be a good time. But... if you have the choice, there is no choice.

I hated Superman Returns in IMAX 3D, more because the movie wasn't designed to work as a 3D film than anything. Too many quick cuts, long lenses and disorienting shakycam. A 2D/3D movie should be designed for 3D first and then "backawards" converted to 2D. And that's how Beowulf operates. There are long, sustained takes that let you settle into the frame and feel the different layers. Very rarely are there any "show-offy" moments where items "pop out" for the sake for popping out. (This is a personal pet peeve of mine, so I was happy to see the 3D was more restrained.) It really is more about separating the scenes into "planes" and adding a sense of depth. And it works astonishingly well.

Now, the CG characters are still creepy. Beowulf looks quite good and I had no problem investing myself in his character. Angelina Jolie gets the best "photo-real" rendering, whereas Anthony Hopkins, John Malkovich and Brendan Gleeson just look a little... "off." And then there are the other females, namely Robin Wright Penn and Alison Lohman, who look like they just fell out of "Female Character Template 1." (I think the problem is that for the male warriors, you can add as many wrinkles, creases and scars as you want to "weather" their faces and make them look battle-worn, whereas with the women, you want to keep them as soft and delicate as possible--which in turn robs them of a crucial level of character design.) Still, despite really impressive voice acting, they all feel a little odd.

That said... it was probably the right choice for this movie. The total control over character and environment allows you to use the 3D technology in a way you simply can't with 2D. That, and otherworldly characters like Grendel and the dragon blend seamlessly into the world (as great as Gollum was, he wasn't always there with Sam and Frodo). So, I suppose it comes down to a question of your taste and how much you're willing to accept in terms of the creepiness. I found the story and the storytelling compelling enough that I went with it, despite itself. And I have a feeling that'll be a common reaction.

As for the story--I never read Beowulf in high school, so I can't give a scholarly dissection of alterations and departures. But I will say that it all worked in a very simple, very compelling way. All of the themes and character motivations were clear and precise, and the action scenes were plenty compelling.

I'd give the movie an 8/10, but with 3D it's a 9/10.
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Postby Lord Voldemoo on Mon Nov 12, 2007 1:59 pm

PLANT!!!!!!!!!!!!

No, but seriously, glad you liked it MW. I've been extremely "meh" on this from the beginning, but I'm left with a conundrum...typically I'd probably wait and watch this on DVD. But it sounds like if I'm ever going to bother to watch it, I should catch it in 3D...
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Postby DinoDeLaurentiis on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:02 pm

Yes... it would a seem that a the Dino's opportunity to gloat, she has a been a strongly curtailed by a the Whedon's review, no?
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Postby MasterWhedon on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:05 pm

That's the thing: I honestly expected it to be terrible. And it sooooo wasn't.
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Postby instant_karma on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:06 pm

Damn you people that live near 3D screens!
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Postby Cha-Ka Khan on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:15 pm

The trailer was on TV the other night and my wife said "Don't make me go see that. You're going to make me go see that, aren't you?"
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Postby Nordling on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:19 pm

I'll be seeing this. The reviews have persuaded me.
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Postby Cha-Ka Khan on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:30 pm

Nordling wrote:I'll be seeing this. The reviews have persuaded me.


Yeah. I told my wife "No, I don't really want to go see it either" but MasterWhedon's review now has me curious.
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Postby MasterWhedon on Mon Nov 12, 2007 2:33 pm

Cha-Ka Khan wrote:The trailer was on TV the other night and my wife said "Don't make me go see that. You're going to make me go see that, aren't you?"

Hahaha, my girlfriend is the same way. Except that since we were both ragging on it after the trailers, and suddenly she sees me breaking into "I! Am! Beowulf!" on a whim, she's kinda intrigued.

BTW, I didn't even mention how fucked-up and fucking amazing Grendel is. His screams, man... His screams...
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Postby Peven on Mon Nov 12, 2007 5:41 pm

unikrunk wrote:ged oudda my hed, Pevs!

We should try and catch the preferred 3D showing, once we know what that is.

After the movie, we can go fucking nuts at the lanes; you know how it is when you are all pumped up after a good action flick, and you take it out on something? Usually it’s driving really fast and that breaking boards and bricks with Agent Ranx. Ranx's movie ratings are based on how much stuff he destroys after watching the film. For example, "Complete destruction of private property" is about a 9/10.

Anyway, let’s do that, only to the bowling lanes; I hope you can handle unikrunk screaming "I am the teeth in the night!' every time I step up to bowl.


you're on, man. its playing I-Max at Mall of Georgia. not sure about lanes around there but i can check. if you don't want to go that far i think it is playing digital 3-D at the AMC in Chamblee, off I-85, which isn't that far from Cheshire Bridge and the lanes you were telling us about.
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Postby Nordling on Mon Nov 12, 2007 5:51 pm

Here's another review, this time from CHUD: http://www.chud.com/index.php?type=reviews&id=12521

That's it, I'm going. I loved the story of BEOWULF when I was younger, and it sounds like they've really expanded the story and made it resonate.
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Postby wonkabar on Wed Nov 14, 2007 12:30 am

The reviews have me convinced...I'll be seeing this opening-day...in IMAX-3D.


Nice write-up btw MW...Thank you sir.
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Postby junesquad on Wed Nov 14, 2007 12:41 am

I, for one, am totally looking forward to Beowulf. I wonder if it will be at the IMAX here...
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Postby Deathlok2001 on Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:09 am

I saw the movie at an IMAX 3d theater. All I can say is....


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Postby Nordling on Fri Nov 16, 2007 8:36 am

Fucking GLORIOUS. You have to see this. It may be the coolest movie I've ever seen. Not the best, mind you. But it's just... so... fucking... COOL.

It's so cool that I don't think I'll buy the DVD to it, because I simply can't imagine seeing this in any other way but in 3D. The last dragon battle.. Grendel... the world Zemeckis and crew have created... 3D Jolie...

Top it off, it's got a terrific story to boot. It's a riff on the original tale, but still respects it and the script by Gaiman and Avary is terrific. The acting is nice, especially Ray Winstone.

Grendel may be the best movie monster since... hell, I don't know when. Crispin Glover plays him with such a heart, and such pity, but there's one shot when Grendel chews on the head of a thain while he looks at Beowulf, daring him to make a move that's just so menacing and cool.

You must see this. 3D. It was built for it. Any other way, and the film suffers. Now, I know you're thinking that "Well, if you have to see it in 3D for it to be good, then it can't be good." Well, imagine all the Oz scenes in THE WIZARD OF OZ were black and white. Sure, it would be neat sets, but you wouldn't get the full punch. BEOWULF in 3D is like that. I stand by it being a good movie... but the 3D makes it something beyond film itself into a genuine experience.

See this. Now.
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Postby Peven on Fri Nov 16, 2007 8:44 am

have tickets to see this puppy tomorrow at 12:30 in I-Max 3-D. can't. wait.
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Postby Nordling on Fri Nov 16, 2007 9:17 am

I'm already thinking of ways to see this again. NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN opened here too. Jesus Christ will this be a fuckin' movie weekend.
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Postby Nordling on Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:37 pm

No one else saw this last night? I am saddened.
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Postby CeeBeeUK on Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:54 pm

Was the whole film in 3D. 'Cause the 3D imax in superman gave me a migraine...
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Postby Nordling on Fri Nov 16, 2007 2:55 pm

It's entirely in 3D.
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Postby unikrunk on Fri Nov 16, 2007 3:04 pm

Nordling wrote:Fucking GLORIOUS. You have to see this. It may be the coolest movie I've ever seen. Not the best, mind you. But it's just... so... fucking... COOL.

It's so cool that I don't think I'll buy the DVD to it, because I simply can't imagine seeing this in any other way but in 3D. The last dragon battle.. Grendel... the world Zemeckis and crew have created... 3D Jolie...

Top it off, it's got a terrific story to boot. It's a riff on the original tale, but still respects it and the script by Gaiman and Avary is terrific. The acting is nice, especially Ray Winstone.

Grendel may be the best movie monster since... hell, I don't know when. Crispin Glover plays him with such a heart, and such pity, but there's one shot when Grendel chews on the head of a thain while he looks at Beowulf, daring him to make a move that's just so menacing and cool.

You must see this. 3D. It was built for it. Any other way, and the film suffers. Now, I know you're thinking that "Well, if you have to see it in 3D for it to be good, then it can't be good." Well, imagine all the Oz scenes in THE WIZARD OF OZ were black and white. Sure, it would be neat sets, but you wouldn't get the full punch. BEOWULF in 3D is like that. I stand by it being a good movie... but the 3D makes it something beyond film itself into a genuine experience.

See this. Now.


Nice post-up, must see this; question, did you watch it in IMAX 3D or Digital 3D...trying to decide which format to check it out in.
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Postby Nordling on Fri Nov 16, 2007 3:21 pm

I saw it in IMAX 3D. The screen's way bigger, but I'm told Real D is digitally projected with sharper colors and picture. Depends on how you want to go, I suppose. I went big, and when I see it again I'll likely go Real D to compare.

As the film and the characters are larger than life, I think IMAX 3D is the way to go the first time, though.
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Postby unikrunk on Fri Nov 16, 2007 3:45 pm

Thanks for the feedback; that's what I was thinking (IMAX). It just seems right.
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Postby Cha-Ka Khan on Fri Nov 16, 2007 3:53 pm

Just got back from the Real 3D digital showing.

I was really surprised. I expected this to be pretty awful, but after reading the ravingly positive reviews from MasterWhedon and Nordling, I was really ready to expect something amazing.

Which is why I was surprised, because man, did this movie blow.

It was mildly interesting on a technical level, but only mildly, because after seeing such amazing work from ILM and WETA, I thought Beowulf looked like a spiffed-up Shrek.

It was hard to get a feeling for what "look" Zemeckis was going for here. On one level, you have the main characters all looking very real, for the most part (although the dreaded "dead-eye" syndrome is highly noticeable, ESPECIALLY with John Malkovich's character, and Robin Wright's), but many of the supporting characters don't fare so well, and none of the clothing looks realistic at all (i.e. Shrek) and while the fine motor skills are decent, the gross body movements again have that Shrek-like quality so that you can immediately see what was performance captured vs. what was animated. So you have a highly stylized cartoony look that ultimately is not photoreal. It's very distracting.

The script is horrible, filled with terribly cliched phrases typically found in lesser heroic-type films. Phrases like "Rasgoth, you bloated old defiler of virgins! Bring me more mead!" and "He died a hero and a king. His song will be sung forever" and "Lothgar, my old friend... it has been many moons since we heard the cry of battle!" Jebus.

There's plenty of in-your-face stuff to show off the 3D, most of it of the "paddle ball" variety, in that it's not subtle at all and really takes you out of the film (no pun intended).

It's clear Zemeckis is in love with the technology, but I couldn't help but think that he probably realized halfway through the project that it was a bust but had no choice other than to soldier on and meet that release date.

The performances are alright, nothing special, although Malkovich for the most part sounds like he gave up and just phoned in most of his ridiculous lines. "Forgive me, o great and noble Beowulf, for doubting you. Here is the sword of my father's father, who smote the dragon of Nosrank yadda yadda yadda. Take it, my Master."

There's also a whole section where Beowulf strips down to the buff to fight Grendel, and while it supposed to be this awesome battle, it ends up being hysterically comical as you see all of the great pains they go to to hide Beowulf's digital winky... hiding it behind someone's head, behind a cauldron, a pig on a spit, and more often, behind a sword. I kid you not. It's utterly ridiculous and Zemeckis ends up fetishizing Beowulf as this muscular, hairless, neutered digital freak instead of making him someone worthy of awe.

Ultimately, this film wanted to be an R film but it's saddled with a PG-13 rating. The violence is so over-the-top to make up for the fact that they can't really show any of it, i.e. Grendel picks up a warrior and begins to pull, and then the camera cuts to someone face as you hear a "rip" sound. Cut back to Grendel throwing the body in one direction and the arm in the other. Or you see him lift someone near his mouth, then cut to someone's reaction as you see the shadow of Grendel on the wall bite the guy's head off. Cut back to Grendel chewing on the head. Again, it's highly comical and it really makes you aware you're watching what ultimately is meant to be a "family film for parents with teens".

There's also a whole bunch of scenes that you KNOW are in there just for the video game tie-in. For example, you can bet there will be a level where you are Beowulf, hanging on to the dragon by a chain as it flies through the air, and you have to hack and slash at the tree branches in your way lest you get knocked off.

I couldn't wait for this movie to finish. It was that dumb. I suppose others will jump down my throat and say it's the greatest film since sliced bread, but even sliced bread is more entertaining.
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