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  Crescent Blues Movie Views

Be prepared for more soldiers than we see in Iraq. In this film, epic battles sweep forces like ants over every ragged horizon -- and tortured seascape. Troy reaches back 3,300 years to an era when making love could necessitate making war too. Then as now in this same region, allied troops conduct sieges, and women's rights quickly become embroiled in international politics -- while heroism grabs the headlines.

Achilles deserves to be at the center of this colossal undertaking. After all, The Iliad begins with the blind Homer singing his tribute to the wrath of this incorrigible champion. In this role, Brad Pitt will surprise viewers. The uncontrollable fury unleashed in the horror masterpiece Seven now serves the purpose of teaching a lesson in the transience of all earthly victories.

The woman who inspired his fury in the original now flees with his blessing. Played by Rose Byrne, Briseis combines fear and trembling with indestructible beauty. As a war prize, her value cannot be surpassed. At no time the slave, she joins her conqueror in pleasure that quickly recognizes necessity. How many instant romances begin similarly -- with war loosing Cupid's arrow?

Eric Bana plays a worthy Hector. The man doomed to suffer for the sins of others still marches to his end as resiliently as Pat Tillman. Here, his wife, Andromache (Saffron Burrows), receives the right to escape slavery. Their babe in arms continues to carry his parents' hope into the future. Just as relatives still appeal for their fathers' lives on television screens, so this version of The Iliad spotlights family drama.

As the cause of the entire Trojan War, Diane Kruger projects a face perfect for magazine covers. By contrast, Irene Pappas played Helen of Troy as the consummate seductress in Trojan Women (1971). As an updated icon of cultural values, the later interpretation comments ironically on the aesthetic ideals of modern America. Both women serve essentially symbolic roles -- one concentrating on serpentine sex, the other on slender packaging.

Peter O'Toole will receive an Oscar nomination for his performance as Priam, the king with a castle no more. Short of a supernatural catastrophe, he will win too! What dramatic scene can compete with an aging monarch requesting only to prepare his son for burial? This esteemed actor once gunned his steed across the desert as the star of Lawrence of Arabia (1962). He could do no better than return for this blast from the past.

This 2004 release provides an updated version of a timeless classic. Viewers may participate in the game of catching changes made to the original. Troy remains faithful to the scope of the epic: This genre captures the life and death of nations. As the hellfire rains down from above, we can only wonder which war we see. Don't miss this chance to experience the most famous treachery in the history of crime and passion!

Meg Curtis

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