‘10,000 B.C.’: Not terrible

Wed, 03/12/2008 - 9:43am
By: Michael Boylan

Roland Emmerich’s film about an ancient warrior out to save his lady love and the rest of his friends and neighbors who have been captured is nowhere near as bad as some critics would have you believe. If you go in expecting a laughably bad film full of near grunting cavemen battling prehistoric birds, mammoths and sabre-toothed tigers (which I kind of did), you will be disappointed (which I surprisingly wasn’t).

The plot of this film is thin. D’Leh is your average, everyday Egal (that’s the tribe he belongs to). He loves a girl who is destined to mean great things for the tribe and she loves him back. When some really evil guys come and kidnap her and a bunch of other Egals to help build the pyramids, D’leh and a few of his buddies, Tic’Tic (no, I’m not kidding), Baku and Ka’Ren (that’s a guy, not a girl named Karen), go after them. They walk over the mountains, through the jungle and across a desert to find their friends and help rescue them.

“10,000 B.C.” won’t ever be confused with great cinema, but it holds your interest for the most part. Some of the mountainous scenery is breath-taking and the action pieces are impressive, starting with a mammoth hunt and ending with a climactic battle around the pyramids between the slaves and their captors. When my attention started to drift from the pacing of the heroes’ journey – which to be fair wasn’t too often – I started to wonder what the real story behind the building of the pyramids was and just where the Egal were from and what countries they were crossing on this epic journey.

Steven Strait, who plays D’leh, is a decent leading man, at least in this role where he is submerged beneath dreadlocks and grime, and Camilla Belle, as his love Evolet, is beautiful, despite similar dreads and grime. The rest of the cast is fine but nothing stellar. I thought that the bad guys in this film, and I’m not sure if they were supposed to be Egyptian or Arab or what, were very menacing looking, which I thought worked well for the movie. Although, the guy they called Warlord sounded exactly like Xerxes from “300,” which then made me think they were Persians, which then made me think that this was some message about see how evil the Middle East has always been. And that may or may not be true, but why cloud this movie about prehistoric people and creatures with politics. And then, before I could go off on some tangent of thought, gigantic birds attacked our heroes and I got swept back into the movie.

“10,000 B.C.” is forgettable. I’m sure if you quiz me on this film in a month or so, I wouldn’t be able to tell you much about it. However, if you’re looking for something to pass the time for close to two hours, you could do a lot worse.


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