Home > Reel to Real > Of men and myths

Of men and myths

hani 250w.jpg I just read an article stating that yet another Hollywood actor wants to make a film in a foreign forgotten language. That’s right, Vin Diesel is the latest. Best known as the muscle-bound bald guy who has done a growing collection of films depicting, yes very cocky muscle-bound bald guys usually acting “good guy” criminals (Planet Tame, Fast and Furious, Triple X etc) or military personal being a hero when kids are in harms way (Saving Privet Ryan, The Pacifier). He really stretches the limits of all an actor can be – in the gym.

Apparently he wants to make a movie (according to him, hopefully three) of the life of the warrior Hannibal and his alpine battles against Roman armies. We’ve seen unusual languages appear in films lately with the Passion of the Christ, and even some of the Lord of the Rings spoken in a created language of the elves. The difference with this project and those other great films is two key ingredients, content and talent. Neither of those elements have caught the ski lift to the alpine slops of this film yet.

The Passion detailed the last hours of the greatest Man to walk the earth, His life and death for the sins of the world. The Rings was already one of the world’s best fantasy/fiction novels of all times and the films simply brought it to life on screen. The story of the Carthaginian general Hannibal despite an interesting historical time, admirable relentless persistence and bravery leading the battles of the second Punic war against the mighty Roman empire has neither a life-changing central character or great literary work from which to draw a screenplay.

No worries, Vinnie has already found a solution to that. Namely teach the cast the archaic Alpine (actually more Algerian) language of Punic to reduce the workload of the script writers. It might serve as a “double blessing” by providing more of the films budget to be designated for the action sequences and special effects. I mean how much dialog to you really need for a bunch of muscle-bound bald guys on elephants in the snow anyways. But you’d be a fool to not rush to the cinema to see cool elephant chase maneuvers, high speed avalanches and prehistoric war gadgets, right? He’s betting on it big time. But doing three movies is pushing it by two and a-half times.

Undoubtedly there will be a lady love interest, perhaps a sister or fiancé to his sworn enemy (just to be original) for which he is willing to risk his life for. Why else would a north African trek 17 days on an elephant over the Alps suffering the loss of much of his troops? He has already shown that there is always just the right cheesy line to say to save him from looking like a serious actor and still get the girl to fall for him. This film might prove to be different then his others on account that we will not have to understand his Punic pick-up lines or have to hear teen boys quoting them in infinitum.

This film project might have had a running chance of being an El Cid or Braveheart at least from a historical adaptation standpoint. Given the right director and a solid character actor lead like those aforementioned films, it might have been something to anticipate. It has a heroic character that history has little real record of allowing more room for yet another unique love/revenge/loyalty story to be built around. 
Unfortunately it will most probably end up looking like the more recent Hollywood historical inaccuracies of Troy and Alexander the Great but without the selling points of either Angelina Jolie (for the men) or Brad Pitt’s butt double (for the ladies) and could be three times as long. Hopefully it will not meet the same fate the real Hannibal did of eventual defeat by the Romans, infighting among his own politicos and poor supply lines. Oops, did I just give away the whole storyline? Guess you can still go to see it for the barbarian triple X factor.    

Categories: Reel to Real
  1. March 16, 2006 at 9:54 pm

    oh, Lordie! I hope someone puts a stop to it before he embarrasses himself too much. Cute drawing, btw, like the tank top, it’s a nice touch 😉

  2. anonymous
    March 19, 2006 at 1:15 am

    Dude, your concepts are fun!

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