Is Ridley Scott’s epic with Joaquin Phoenix worth going to the movies?

Master director Ridley Scott once again shakes cinemas with historic battles. But is “Napoleon” worth going to the movies?

Yeah RidleyScott invites you to a historical epic, moviegoers willingly follow its call. With works such as “Gladiator”, “Kingdom of Heaven” and most recently “The Last Duel”, the director finally earned a reputation as a master of historical battle scenes. If he then returns to the “Gladiator” star Joaquin Phoenix “The Crown” star works together vanessa kirby he was able to secure and with his help stage the life of the famous French emperor and general Napoleon Bonaparte; Yes, nothing can go wrong, right?

In it November 23, 2023 just start with the name “Napoleon” The named film will be shown in German cinemas and, some time later, can be seen exclusively on Apple TV+. After all, exorbitant budgets are only available on streaming services these days, unless it’s a franchise film. Luckily, Apple opened its wallet because Ridley Scott really knew how to take advantage of the $200 million his latest work is said to have cost (via Variety). The trailers already demonstrated it:

Ridley Scott once again offers the best battle scenes

“Napoleon” follows the title character through 22 truly turbulent years, in which he rose from artillery lieutenant to French emperor and, for a time, the most powerful man in Europe. Scott did not miss the opportunity to take advantage of his strengths and his budget: several things await you in the film gigantic battle scenes, which impress with precise and exciting production, and at the same time, along with all the cinematic splendor, do not ignore cruelty. When cannonballs and gunshots rain down on armies, and even on unarmed civilians, the bloody and horrific result is clear.

But all the noise of battle and campaigns of conquest are just one facet of “Napoleon.” The film also brings to life the relationship between the emperor and his empress Joséphine de he. surprisingly toxic and dysfunctional way. In these growing scenes of the imperial marriage, Vanessa Kirby and Joaquin Phoenix show why they are among the most sought-after actors of our time. Her characters enter into an unhealthy emotional dependence from the beginning, although for obviously different reasons: Joséphine needs Napoleon’s social status and economic resources above all. He, in turn, is driven by a seemingly childish desire to possess and control his wife; all for you, of course.

Joaquin Phoenix and Vanessa Kirby act as actors © Apple

The emotionally immature side of its main character will surely be the biggest surprise in “Napoleon.” Because while other biopics often seek pathos, Ridley Scott’s work seems like one of many moments. eloquent comedy. The historically charged general is repeatedly reduced to a crude joke figure who exposes himself to ridicule precisely for his overly masculine behavior. At the same time, the period film shows how ridiculous and harmful it was that at that time only men had the say and women were reduced to their ability to give birth. Not bad for an 85 year old person. white Man, Mr. Scott!

“Napoleon” is simply too epic

As successful as all these comedic interludes at Napoleon’s expense are, they occasionally hurt the film. In some places the question arises as to why this particular man was able to achieve such power. We don’t really see the tactical genius that Napoleon was in action until halfway through the film, when he uses some brilliant tricks to secure a magnificent victory at the Battle of Austerlitz. However, never mind that Napoleon was also very capable as a statesman and brought France, which was practically financially ruined, out of his misery.

This is probably the biggest weakness of “Napoleon”: The movie just doesn’t last long enough. Not even the 158 minutes of duration are enough for Ridley Scott to be able to dance properly at all the chosen weddings. The marriage with Joséphine, the characterization and biography of Napoleon himself, the political events and the numerous battles make this work, to say the least, overflowing. This makes it look out of focus, even out of place.

Fortunately, there is a remedy in sight: Ridley Scott will also have one on Apple TV+ at an unknown date at this time Director’s Cut publish – which according to your statement about for four hours could be. I only went to the screening of “Napoleon” for this view. with a wish: After watching it for the first time, I wanted to still have enough interest in this play that the four-hour version would appeal to me. The theatrical version definitely fulfilled this hope, especially since Scott also promised that his director’s cut will give more space to Vanessa Kirby’s Joséphine (via Empire), which the actress and we as viewers definitely deserve.

However, I can only encourage you to see “Napoleon” in the cinema: the epic battle scenes, costumes and scenery deserve to be experienced on the biggest screen possible. In a perfect world, the four-hour version would have been released immediately, but perhaps Apple will be persuaded by such a campaign if it is so successful. But then, with a proper bathroom break, please.

How well do you know the history of historical films? Find out:

Historical cinema test: How well do you know this genre?

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