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Sunday, 19 October 2014

Ridley Scott's Kingdom of Heaven (Director's Cut) on Blu-ray

I'm an absolute glutton for anything medieval and especially if its done good. Ridley Scott has a wonderful signature with camera work. Atmospheric sets - javelins of light through curtains and all captures ambiance and makes the watcher feel as though he is inside the story.

He did this with The Duellists back in 1977 when capturing the period of Napoleonic France. He did it with Gladiator and Ancient Rome. In the Kingdom of Heaven, he does it with the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem in the 1180s.

Our hero is a re-invented version of Balian - a real knight of the Holy land who had to defend Jerusalem against Saladin the Great. In real life Balian was a married man in his early fifties. However, for our story Balian is a much younger man who is a widower in his early twenties. He goes to the Holy land in search of redemption for his dead wife who committed suicide. He is of humble origin in the story, though this was not so in real life. It does not matter because our Kingdom of Heaven story is a wonderful work of art with so many grand historical characters in it. We have Baldwin the IV - The Christian leper king of Jerusalem, Guy De Lusignan, Raynald De Chatillon and, of course, Saladin the Great.

The Directors cut is by far the best version to get and on Blu-ray it is an absolute peach of a movie. There is some 45 minuets extra footage concerning much of Queen Isabella's dilemma concerning her young son. I loved this movie and would say its one of Ridley Scott's best. (Does he have bad movies?)

Well worth the money and I would give it a 10 out of 10. 


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