Saw Alexaaaaaaaaaaander (correct pronunciation) yesterday. Some observations:
- A grand sweeping canvas does not an epic make. We live in times when most fancy hotels and heritage resorts look so majestic that even the most ambitious film sets look like good imitations at best.
- Child actors rule! Having seen Mughal-e-Azam over the weekend, I cannot help generalizing. The two scenes with Salim junior and the ten with Alexander junior left an indelible impression upon me.
- There is not a single line of dialogue that I carried out of the theatre with me. So many scenes were crying out to be written as dramatic, memorable pieces. (Mughal-e-Azam hangover again) Coming to think of it, I haven’t heard a memorable line in a Hollywood movie in a long, long time.
- War scenes have been done to death. After Troy and company, I can only yawn through kilometres of footage of kilometres of army lines spilling each other’s blood. I would have shot the war as duels between eagles!
- Alexander is a good Aryan boy and the Persian king is an Osama clone.
- Babylonians wear jewellery from Jaipur and Sambhalpuri Ikat from Orissa. They wear Gujarati shawls when it gets chilly.
- If you cross over the Hindooooooooookush (correct pronunciation) and enter India, you land in Assam. Incessant rain and elephants just don’t happen at wholesale rates anywhere else. For detail, check mosaic tile maps circa 300 BC.
- Based on accent, some Greeks are Hispanic. Some are Irish. Many are too drunk to be coherent.
- How can you have a hero die of malaria and heartbreak? (Thanks, Heretic.) So you can have a bizarre Indian Maharaja kill him. No comments on the portrayal of India (the land that has never been conquered by anyone ha ha) and Indians (beaded beards???).
- It’s an epic minus a soul, a feast without salt. Unless of course, Angelina Jolie and some snakes are good enough for you.
Urgently Needed: A really bold approach to an epic.