Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Movie Buff: The Prince of Persia Is Finally Here!

A scene from the movie

A buff Jake Gyllenhaal

From one of my favourite, if not the favourite producers, Jerry Bruckheimer, comes Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Having brought to the world the likes of Bad Boys, National Treasure, CSI, and Pirates of the Carribean, and many more, I expected A LOT from this one. Don’t you just hate it when the trailer contains all the best parts squeezed into that minute or two? Heck, I know I do! If you thought the trailer was good, you’re in for a surprise. Compared to the actual movie, it stinks! But one never knows how these video game cum movies will do. But this one far exceeded my expectations!

The movie starts with the introduction of a young Dastan and Bis, orphaned best friends trying to get by in life. As fate would have it, King Sharaman of Persia was in town for a little trip and witnessed Dastan’s bravery and smarts and proceeded to adopt him.

Flashforward 15 years, and Prince Dastan is now a dashingly handsome young man (Jake Gyllenhaal anyone!!) A total opposite from his two older royal-blooded brothers, his approach to life is a brasher, unbiased one. This can be seen in how he storms the gates of Alamut. This you must watch! As usual with Jerry Bruckheimer movies, stunts are original and very well-choreographed. Architecture is also emphasized with spectacularly designed sets and backdrops.

Inside the palace we see Princess Tamina, brought to life in the form of Gemma Arterton. When I first found out she would be in this film, my thoughts were “Uh oh…” especially after the “acting” she delivered in Clash of the Titans. But alas, there is nothing to fear. I thought she did well this time. Granted, she has a major role this time and has moved up from a Bond Girl cum Sorceress to a Princess of a sacred city. She is also the protector of the dagger at the centre of the whole movie/game.

When Dastan is believed to have murdered his father, the King, he is forced to flee, taking Tamina with him. Now he has to figure out who framed him, clear his name, restore peace to his family and country, and get married. What ensues is an incredible adventure filled with cool parkour stunts, and great special-effects! I am wondering why THIS movie wasn’t made into a 3D one. From what I saw, this would have been the only movie besides Avatar that I’d have bothered watching in 3D.

Alfred Molina lends his acting chops as a hilarious Sheik Amar who has an affinity with ostriches. Of all animals, they picked ostriches! Ben Kingsley plays Nizam, uncle to the three princes. There are some very funny characters in this one, and some real bad-asses with vile creatures used to take down the poor good guys. Unlike the Gladiator and Robin Hood movies, the fighting scenes, even though fast-paced, don’t zip by so fast you don’t know what is going on.

Okay, I will admit that part of why I was so looking forward to this movie was to watch Jake Gyllenhaal all buffed up and looking sultry, let’s just say, he didn’t disappoint! Part-way through the movie I even noticed that I wasn’t even looking at his chest. I was too enraptured by his lovely blue oases. Hear me when I say there were some protests when the kissing scene came about. I was silently one of them.

As I was writing this post, the trailer played at least 4 times! No surprise as this is the run-up to the movie’s official opening date. All in all, a MUST-WATCH to me. Even my movie date, who is easily bored and loves to fill those moments by eating popcorn was glued to the screen, quite a feat I tell you!

I will go out and say that this might just be the Summer Blockbuster of 2010!

Prince of Persia: Sands of Time opens in Malaysian cinemas May 27. Go on, I dare you not to watch it!!

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this review financially or otherwise. Everything mentioned are my own thoughts based on my experience.