Friday, January 16, 2009


Sergei Bodrov, Russia, 2007 (8.9*)
Stunning cinematography and visual images make this biopic of the early life of a Mongol named Temudgin, who was later to become Genghis Khan, a must see for all cinema fans. The faces of the actors are all perfect, as we start with a nine-year old Temudgin on a trip with his father, who gets poisoned. The next couple of decades are not only a fight for survival, but also provide the future khan with enough solitude to be able to clearly conceive a plan for his life that he later put into action. When captured, a priest of the king says "let this man go, I see hordes of Mongols on horseback." The king put him in a cage with this on a sign in front, "the Mongol who would destroy my kingdom." This is one of the most compelling Russian films, the first part of a proposed trilogy on the life of Genghis Khan. An Oscar nominee for foreign language film, should have been a cinematography and directing nominee as well.


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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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