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Pompeii
BLU-RAY disk
05.27.2014 By: J.A. Hamilton
Pompeii order download
Director:
Paul W.S. Anderson

Actors:
Kit Harington
Emily Browning
Kiefer Sutherland

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Jon Snow takes some time off from fighting White Walkers and douche kings, to fight Jack Bauer and a volcano. I mean, come on folks, if that doesn’t sell this flick nothing will!
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
On the surface, POMPEII is a theatrical version of the recent SPARTACUS series with a big budget for special effects and an impressive cast of well-known actors. On the flip side, the storyline is lackluster and predictable (mainly because it’s been done a gazillion times), something I could easily overlook if all the gritty, blood soaked goodness we’ve come to expect from SPARTACUS wasn’t stripped away for a PG-13 rating. I’m not saying blood and boobs need to go hand in hand with swords and sandals, but that just happens to be my personal preference.

I like Kit Harrington, mainly because I’m a huge GAME OF THRONES fan, and because he looked and acted like Jon Snow here. I’m also a huge Kiefer Sutherland fan, but damn if he didn’t just feel “off” in this movie. I can’t quite put my finger on why (though the accent didn’t help), but I just wasn’t feeling him here, which is a shame. Loved seeing Mr. Eko though, despite knowing full well how his story arc would end. Haven’t seen Carrie-Anne Moss in ages, not that it matters as her and Jared Harris are both wasted characters. And yes, Babydoll’s still go it. She’s a lot hotter as a blonde though.

POMPEII is phenomenal, visually, as far as disaster films go, but again, it’s nothing that hasn’t already been done. I couldn’t help but wonder as I watched the level of danger progress with the volcano, how in the hell nobody seemed to notice a gargantuan mountain of fire slowly coming to life? Sure, I might be persuaded to believe that people were caught up in the games, but you’d think they’d have scouts watching for signs as a “just in case” precaution—It IS a volcano after all. But hey, that’s just me. Aside from that, I dug the fighting, but had to laugh when Sutherland’s character was riding a three horse wide chariot down a road with no obstacles whatsoever in the midst of all hell breaking loose. That’s just how Jack Bauer rolls.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary: Director Paul W.S. Anderson gives an alright go of it (I don’t mind his commentaries), but it would have been so much better had he included an actor or two—You know Milla would have been in here had she starred in it.

Deleted/Alternate Scenes: Twenty-three minutes of nothing really, save for an extra couple moments of Kiefer Sutherland’s character being a huge dick, which I suppose is better than nothing.

The Assembly: Paul W.S. Anderson and cast weigh in about their roles and the importance of chemistry between leads. I’ll agree that at the very least, the leads had good chemistry.

The Journey: Anderson gives us the 411 on Pompeii’s history and what makes it such an unmistakable jewel of a story. I’d love to see it with my own eyes someday.

The Costume Shop: The costume designer leads us through the vast amount of cool wardrobe and talks about getting the historical accuracy correct. I was impressed with the armor and set pieces.

The Volcanic Eruption: This is where the film shines, despite arriving in the third act. The natural disaster element of this flick was beyond impressive so I still don’t fully understand how they didn’t see this one coming.

The Gladiators: Well, it’s no SPARTACUS (but let’s be honest, nothing ever will be), but the film’s gladiators were impressive and fun watch. No complaints there.

Pompeii: Buried in Time: Much like the previous “Journey”, Anderson goes a bit more in-depth in the historical department. Pretty interesting if you’re into it.

Previews: There are a slew of trailers as well as 3D Blu-ray and Ultraviolet Copy of the film.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Don’t go into this one expecting the Roman equivalent to the re-invention of the chariot wheel cause it ain’t gonna happen. That said, it’s not a total waste of time either. There’s some cool fights, effects and yes, Jon Snow vs. Jack Bauer. That in itself is worth the rental.
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