Reviewed: Wrath of Gods

Category: 300 News | Posted by: stagewomanjen
Article Date: September 29, 2007 | Publication: thehollywoodnews.com | Author: Adam Mast
Publication/Article Link:http://www.thehollywoodnews.com/artman2/publish/movie_reviews/Reviewed_Wrath_of_Gods_14290907.php

Grade: B

Wrath of Gods is an intriguing exploration into the rigors of film making as seen through the troubled production of 2005's Beowulf and Grendel (not to be confused with Robert Zemeckis' upcoming motion capture adaptation of the same famed tale). The action is shown from the perspective of an extra in the film, a bystander whose on set video diary would showcase a seemingly doomed production. There were so many unforseen disasters on set (a car crash involving a member of the crew, dwindling finances, a leaky prop boat, etc.), that if it all didn't really happen, I never would have believed it.

Through it all, Beowulf and Grendel director Sturla Gunnarsson remains relatively affable as does his spirited cast headed by a playful Gerard Butler (Phantom of the Opera, 300) and the gifted Stellan Skarsgard. (Good Will Hunting, Pirates of the Carribean: Dead Man's Chest). Miraculously, Beowulf and Grendel did survive an intense production schedule and while the film didn't really go on to enjoy domestic box office success, that's hardly the point. Through all the unforseen crap, Gunnarsson and crew finished the job. The same couldn't be said for the brilliant Terry Gilliam who never was able to see his "The Man Who Killed Don Quixote" adaptation come to life (that story is brilliantly displayed in the similarly themed documentary Lost in La Mancha which Butler playfully references in this film).

Documentaries like Lost in La Mancha and the entertaining if a trifle sad Wrath of Gods make me wonder how any film ever gets completed. I have yet to see Beowulf and Grendel, but after watching Wrath of Gods, you can bet I'll check it out soon. Perhaps actress Sarah Polley sums it up best "The only thing honestly I can compare it to is "The Adventures of Baron Manchuasen" when I was 8 and that was I think 3 times harder than this. But nothing's have come close until this, in terms of just sheer, demented ambition." Wrath of Gods will be playing at the Red Rock Film Festival in Springdale, UT this November. For a complete Red Rock Film Festival line-up, check out redrockfilmfestival.com.