Announcement

Collapse

Welcome to Moorcock's Miscellany

Dear reader,

Many people have given their valuable time to create a website for the pleasure of posing questions to Michael Moorcock, meeting people from around the world, and mining the site for information. Please follow one of the links above to learn more about the site.

Thank you,
Reinart der Fuchs
See more
See less

The rise of the History and Fantasy Epic Film

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • The rise of the History and Fantasy Epic Film

    Mr M., given that you postulated in one of your posts that, provisionally, Elric may be released about 2005 given the way films are made thesedays it could, theoretically, be on general release at the same time as the below mentioned film by Ridley Scott, though I could be wrong as my sources are after all electronic. The article below I saw some months back and raises interesting questions that perhaps are better discussed on other more cerebral boards on this site. Especially so as the 'fake torture' has thrown up some genuine ill-discipline most recently. Anyhow it's something to consider when releasing the movie to at least know or guess at the the then current Zeitgeist-Realpolitik .

    :roll:

    Ridley Scott's new Crusades film 'panders to Osama bin Laden'
    By Charlotte Edwardes
    (Filed: 18/01/2004)


    Sir Ridley Scott, the Oscar-nominated director, was savaged by senior British academics last night over his forthcoming film which they say "distorts" the history of the Crusades to portray Arabs in a favourable light.

    The آ£75 million film, which stars Orlando Bloom, Jeremy Irons and Liam Neeson, is described by the makers as being "historically accurate" and designed to be "a fascinating history lesson".


    Sir Ridley Scott
    Academics, however - including Professor Jonathan Riley-Smith, Britain's leading authority on the Crusades - attacked the plot of Kingdom of Heaven, describing it as "rubbish", "ridiculous", "complete fiction" and "dangerous to Arab relations".

    The film, which began shooting last week in Spain, is set in the time of King Baldwin IV (1161-1185), leading up to the Battle of Hattin in 1187 when Saladin conquered Jerusalem for the Muslims.

    The script depicts Baldwin's brother-in-law, Guy de Lusignan, who succeeds him as King of Jerusalem, as "the arch-villain". A further group, "the Brotherhood of Muslims, Jews and Christians", is introduced, promoting an image of cross-faith kinship.

    "They were working together," the film's spokesman said. "It was a strong bond until the Knights Templar cause friction between them."

    The Knights Templar, the warrior monks, are portrayed as "the baddies" while Saladin, the Muslim leader, is a "a hero of the piece", Sir Ridley's spokesman said. "At the end of our picture, our heroes defend the Muslims, which was historically correct."

    Prof Riley-Smith, who is Dixie Professor of Ecclesiastical History at Cambridge University, said the plot was "complete and utter nonsense". He said that it relied on the romanticised view of the Crusades propagated by Sir Walter Scott in his book The Talisman, published in 1825 and now discredited by academics.

    "It sounds absolute balls. It's rubbish. It's not historically accurate at all. They refer to The Talisman, which depicts the Muslims as sophisticated and civilised, and the Crusaders are all brutes and barbarians. It has nothing to do with reality."

    Prof Riley-Smith added: "Guy of Lusignan lost the Battle of Hattin against Saladin, yes, but he wasn't any badder or better than anyone else. There was never a confraternity of Muslims, Jews and Christians. That is utter nonsense."

    Dr Jonathan Philips, a lecturer in history at London University and author of The Fourth Crusade and the Sack of Constantinople, agreed that the film relied on an outdated portrayal of the Crusades and could not be described as "a history lesson".

    He said: "The Templars as 'baddies' is only sustainable from the Muslim perspective, and 'baddies' is the wrong way to show it anyway. They are the biggest threat to the Muslims and many end up being killed because their sworn vocation is to defend the Holy Land."

    Dr Philips said that by venerating Saladin, who was largely ignored by Arab history until he was reinvented by romantic historians in the 19th century, Sir Ridley was following both Saddam Hussein and Hafez Assad, the former Syrian dictator. Both leaders commissioned huge portraits and statues of Saladin, who was actually a Kurd, to bolster Arab Muslim pride.

    Prof Riley-Smith added that Sir Ridley's efforts were misguided and pandered to Islamic fundamentalism. "It's Osama bin Laden's version of history. It will fuel the Islamic fundamentalists."

    Amin Maalouf, the French historian and author of The Crusades Through Arab Eyes, said: "It does not do any good to distort history, even if you believe you are distorting it in a good way. Cruelty was not on one side but on all."

    Sir Ridley's spokesman said that the film portrays the Arabs in a positive light. "It's trying to be fair and we hope that the Muslim world sees the rectification of history."

    The production team is using Loarre Castle in northern Spain and have built a replica of Jerusalem in Ouarzazate, in the Moroccan desert. Sir Ridley, 65, who was knighted in July last year, grew up in South Shields and rose to fame as director of Alien, starring Sigourney Weaver.

    He followed with classics such as Blade Runner, Thelma and Louise, which won him an Oscar nomination in 1992, and in 2002 Black Hawk Down, told the story of the US military's disastrous raid on Mogadishu. In 2001 his film Gladiator won five Oscars, but Sir Ridley lost out to Steven Soderbergh for Best Director.
    :roll:
    \'You know my destiny?\' said Elric eagerly. \'Tell me what it is, Niun Who Knew All.\'
    Niun opened his mouth as if to speak but then firmly shut it again. \'No,\' he said. \'I have forgotten.\'

  • #2
    Hmm. The notion of both Saracens and Franks (as it were) being more or less equally chivalrous as well as being more or less equally tricky on occasions, seems to have been around for quite a while, especially if you read accounts of both sides.
    That said, I can't see much of a clash of interests.
    There's a great book, which I leant to someone and have never been able to find another copy, from the point of view of a Syrian knight.
    He certainly saw his side as pretty decent blokes and the Crusaders as
    a fairly uncivilised and uncouth bunch, on the whole, but reckoned some of them were decent enough...
    Wish I could remember the title of the book.

    Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in Europe:
    The Whispering Swarm: Book One of the Sanctuary of the White Friars - The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction
    Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles - Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - Modem Times 2.0 - The Sunday Books - The Sundered Worlds


    Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in the USA:
    The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction - The Sunday Books - Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles
    Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - The Sundered Worlds - The Winds of Limbo - Modem Times 2.0 - Elric: Swords and Roses

    Comment


    • #3
      I doubt the director of Kingdom of Heaven will make the muslims look like angles. After all he made BlackHawk Down. Also terrorist have been making threats to the movie crew of this movie. They are under security. I don't realy care to see it for I am sure he will kiss the muslims asses a little bit. :roll: If I had to chose between ithis movie and the Elric movie I would choose the Elric movie.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Galadriel
        After all he made BlackHawk Down.
        ...which was watered down compared to what really happens in that book. Might as well be white wash. As in when was the last time CNN showed people falling from the WTC and splattering on the pavement? They don't want you to see those images, do they? And why not? That's not for your social class.

        Meanwhile, while Tom Paine rolls over in his grave:

        Bitter Sinister Thought:

        Hmm. Sir Ridley. The Queen's filthy govn't don't give people honours for contributing to the enlightenment or the welfare of the middle classes: Sir-can't-wait-till-you-join-yer-mates-John-and-George being a prime example of such-a-such entertainment industry frauds and rats as helps the Bishop Beesley class pull the wool over the eyes of decent lower-middle class stooges left straining to look agreeable, PC and respectable yonder standing up to their wellies in shite whilst holding the bag.

        Sweet Sinister Thought:

        I'd rather see a film of Dictionary of the Khazars. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, ye Woodstockers! Your Bushwacked-rainbow-choke-on-warm-fuzzy-postmodern-suburban-doubbleplusgood-speechregulated-drugcontrolled-thoughtpure-Nietzschian-relativistic-Utopia will go down in hate and flames. Mu-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! Mu-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!

        He Has His Revenge:

        Go read Anthony Burgess' last book Byrne. Smart title. Byrne--get it? As in "Burn baby burn...." Tony knew what's coming.

        (Let's hope he was wrong.)

        Comment


        • #5
          Yes, BlackHawk Down was watered down that is why I am not going to see Kingdom of Heaven. I have no doubt that he will paint the muslims in a better light then history did.

          Comment


          • #6
            By and large the Saracens (or muslims) didn't get a bad press. Certainly not in Sir Walter Scott, where (as in The Talisman) they tend to be depicted as people of great personal honour. Indeed this 'Arabist' view of the Arab world is rather typical of the British POV and it was a complaint of Zionists that Britain was too pro-Arab when the issue of Israel was being settled. It is still considered a truism that the British and French foreign offices are inclined to be 'pro-Arab'. So the tradition of supporting and respecting Muslim causes is not a new one, nor would
            Ridley Scott be doing, say, Lawrence of Arabia, a disservice if he took the view that both sides had their codes of honour and both sides were guilty, on more than one occasion, of going in the face of those codes.
            Thomas Lightfoot reminds me that the book I was recommending is called An Arab-Syrian Gentleman and Warrior in the Time of the Crusades by Usamah ibn Mundiq and translated by Philip K. Hitti.
            Thanks, Thomas!

            Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in Europe:
            The Whispering Swarm: Book One of the Sanctuary of the White Friars - The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction
            Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles - Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - Modem Times 2.0 - The Sunday Books - The Sundered Worlds


            Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in the USA:
            The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction - The Sunday Books - Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles
            Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - The Sundered Worlds - The Winds of Limbo - Modem Times 2.0 - Elric: Swords and Roses

            Comment

            Working...
            X