5.31.2004

Troy

I watched Troy over the weekend and nearly fell asleep. It's not a bad movie per se, but it's in no way exciting. The story is more about Achilles than Troy, which is to be expected with Brad Pitt playing Achilles I suppose.

Thus most of the historical aspects of the war are condensed into movie form, which is to say they take a nine year long war and turn it into a two week battle that focuses on Achilles' and never hint at the rest.

The untold story is more interesting, in my opinion. There's a lot of Greek history, battles and many heros who are far superior to Achilles but are only used as weak supporting characters in the movie.

What the movie got wrong

In the movie, Patroclus was Achilles' cousin and he used Achilles' armor without his knowing, but in Greek history Patroclus was his friend (some say his lover) and was told by Achilles to use his armor.

When Achilles is angered over Patroclus' death and kills Hector he drags his body back to the camp behind a chariot. In greek history, he dragged the body for nine days.

In the movie the Greeks set out in a great naval armada for Troy, land on the beach and the war is on and only lasts a couple of weeks. But actually, the Greeks first attacked the Teuthranians. After a costly win against them, the Greeks returned home until they found out that Helen was in Troy. After they finally reached Troy, they fought a nine year long war against the Trojans and their allied cities nearby. Achilles fought bravely in many of these battles, capturing 23 Trojan towns, killing several famous warriors, and winning many victories.

The woman Achilles saves and eventually falls in love with is some sort of sworn virgin in the temple of the sun god, but in Greek history it was Briseis, wife of Mynes, the King of Lyrnessus, a Trojan city that Achilles helped the Greeks defeat.

Though the prophet Helenus stated that Achilles would be needed to win the Trojan war, contrary to the movie, Achilles was not a famous warrior before going to Troy. When he was younger he was a "juvenile deliquent" and his mother knew that it was his destiny to go to Troy and die, so when he was 9 years old, she thought it would be best to dress him as a girl and sent him to King Lycomedes of Scyros. The disguise was discovered by Odysseus and Achilles agreed to go to Troy with him. He was only 15 at the time and left behind Deidamia, his pregnant newlywed wife.

In the movie, Ajax, another famous Greek warrior, is killed by Hector and mourned by Achilles but Ajax actually outlived Achilles and after Achilles death competed with Odysseus to win Achilles armor. When Odysseus won the armor, Ajax went mad and tried to kill everyone but Athena intervened and made him think a bunch of cattle were the Greeks so he killed them instead. When he realized what he was doing, he committed suicide.

I will have to let the reader find the history on their own, but this movie is not about Troy, it is about Brad Pitt trying to make Achilles look good. Hey Braddie, Achilles doesn't really need your help.

For the attention span deprived: Troy in 15 minutes



<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?