The Last Legion

The Last Legion

DVD - 2007
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In 460 A.D. Aurelius Antonius finds himself recalled to Rome and is assigned the Commander of new Caesar, Romulus Augustus' retinue of personal bodyguards. Romulus is destined to be crowned the last emperor of Rome. His reign lasts for one day and ends with Rome being run over by the savage Goths. In the resulting invasion, most of Aurelius's men are killed and the young Caesar is captured and imprisoned in the forbidding Isle of Capri. Aurelius, with the very few legionnaires left him, undertakes a rescue mission, with the assistance of a mysterious Byzantine warrior, who turns out to be a beautiful, very lethal woman named Mira. Against impossible odds, Romulus Augustus is rescued. But, with the Roman legions having just sworn allegiance to the Goths, the one remaining hope lies in the forgotten 9th Legion, called the Dragon legion, which had been assigned to remote Brittania. Unfortunately, the 9th Legion, which they had pinned their hopes on, is not what it once was.

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r
rosemvasqu
Jan 21, 2015

Kevin Mc

a
akirakato
Nov 29, 2012

The film had a relatively poor reception by the public and critics probably because the film departs from the novel in several ways; so much so that its credits state it to be "based in part" on the original. There are some anachronisms in the film. The uniforms and weapons of the Ninth Legion as depicted in the film reflect an earlier period of Roman history than the film is set in. By 460, Roman legionaries did not wear scarlet cloaks, nor did they carry the semi-circular shields of ancient times, and the short stabbing sword known as the gladius had been replaced. Mira's weapon, the Katar or Katara (कटार), had not been invented at the time in which the action is set. Katars came into use more than 1000 years later. A few of the castles and fortified cities in the film have round spires with pointed coned roofs, when in fact this style of buildings was not common until the late Middle Ages. During scenes in the film where people are shown riding horses you can clearly see stirrups even though those kind of stirrups did not come into use in Europe until after 700 AD. Anyroad, the movie is a fascinating and entertaining piece in terms of good performances of the actors, especially in the fighting scenes.

m
mjcuaycong
Mar 18, 2012

I rented this because I like Colin Firth and the Roman era. The overall story is solid. Ben Kingsley does a fantastic job as the teacher/sorcerer Ambrosinus. As usual, Colin Firth gives a fine performance as a taciturn and thoughtful Roman commander. However, the directing for the other characters was weak. At times, e.g. the attack of Orestes castle and the rescue of Romulus, actors seem to stand around, not knowing or uncomfortable in what they are supposed to do. This was especially true for one of the lead characters, Thomas Sangster, who played Romulus. Overall, he seemed gangly and uncomfortable. Yes, he may have been in that awkward stage between man and boy. However, as someone destined to be Caesar from birth, Thomas made this Caesar TOO awkward - making the movie less enjoyable.

If you watch the deleted scenes with the director's comments, you will see there are a few scenes that could have been kept to give the story more substance and continuity. For example, the scene between the Goths and Ambassador from Constantinople. The interaction between them would have fleshed out the personality and intent of Odoacer, the Goth leader. Another deleted scene is a discussion of Aurelius' wife between Mira and Batiatus. This would have added some background to Mira's interest in Aurelius, his reserve toward her, and the length of time his men have served with him. I admire the director's attention to the pace of the film but he may had edited too much. Rather than improving flow, the edits made the storyline seem disjointed and took away depth of the characters and relationships.

So, overall, decent story, solid acting by expected actors but poor job by director on directing less solid actors and on editing.

s
sykch
Aug 27, 2011

When people put so much time, effort, and money in to making movies, all movies deserve to be watched and appreciated at some level. And even when the critics pan it, you shouldn’t listen to them, because you might like a little bit of it (eg, Centurion [2010]; Arthur [2004]). I don't want to offend those who liked this movie, but it was definitely not for me. Firstly, Colin Firth in a sword and sandal movie? Really? And a 105-pound Indian actress, with a 20-inch waist and beautifully plucked eye brows, as the woman who slew 20 men at one sword swinging…not that women have to be ugly if they are powerful, but really? Aside from poor casting--you could taken all that cast and make an excellent “Hound of the Baskervilles”--direction, script, special effects, sword fighting, costumes, set design (Legos-like), and editing were really, really bxx. However, it did make look up Excalibur again.

s
stse88
Aug 14, 2011

Badly done, boring script, forgettable acting.

t
tj_is_cool
Jul 09, 2011

Entertaining movie about the origins of Merlin and King Arthur.

b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

I checked this out not realizing I had seen it before, and watched it all over again. I'd have to say this is one of those films that really doesn't get the credit it deserves. The acting was good, and the fight scenes were well done. While this movie is historically inaccurate it is still a lot of fun. I would recommend this movie to action adventure fans.

h
heartofoak
Apr 12, 2011

I thought I was safe with Firth & Kingsley: I imagine Colin Firth & Ben Kingsley’s agents simultaneously encouraging them to say yes “I know the script seems dodgy, but Colin/Ben has already agreed to do it”….Take Lord of the Rings, break into wedges like a Terry’s Orange & put it back together, substituting the characters from the fellowship /orcs with Romans /Gauls & VOILA! you have The Last Legion. It was so predictably bad that I actually enjoyed watching it to the bitter end, inserting the dialogue as I went & waiting to see which scene they would steal next from Peter Jackson. If you’ve got kids who loved LOTR, then this movie would probably be a hit, but if you’re at all serious about watching something with any merit, I encourage you to throw this into the fiery chasm from whence it came.

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b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

Aurelius: Who are you?
Ambrosinus: One who knows humiliation to be a poor teacher, of both men and boys.
Aurelius: I smell a philosopher.

b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

Romulus Augustus: Mother, am I now the most powerful man in the world?
Flavia: Of course you are.
Romulus Augustus: Then why can't I stay out tonight?

b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

Demetrius: You kept your armor after all these years?
Tertius: Ten years as a farmer gives you something worth fighting for. Twenty as a legionary teaches you to be ready for the day.
Demetrius: Good man.

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b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

bdls206 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

As the Roman empire crumbles, young Romulus Augustus flees the city and embarks on a perilous voyage to Britain to track down a legion of supporters.

Notices

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b
bdls206
May 11, 2011

Violence: This title contains Violence.

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