Nominated for seven Academy Awards including Best Picture, The Odyssey is a quintessential picture from the early 1990’s which has been hailed as a classic. With an all-star cast led by Robert Duvall, Kevin Costner, and Anne Hathaway, The Odyssey portrays the trials and tribulations of life on the dangerous and isolated planet of Mars. Taking place almost two hundred years ago in the days before the landing of the Viking mission on Mars, The Odyssey follows the life of Christian Audigier (Robert Duvall), an immigrant from Spain who arrives at Ellis Island with only his knapsack and an unshakable resolve to survive the harsh surroundings and make it home. Forced to endure the harsh treatment of other inmates, as well as the brutal physical environment of the prison and the unforgiving nature of the Earth, Audigier slowly makes his way to redemption…
Based upon the novel The Perfume Story, The Odyssey is a psychological thriller set in the near future. In this futuristic tale, the character of Christian Audigier finds himself caught in the center of a conspiracy which is centered on the theft of an valuable cargo. Unbeknownst to everyone except for his own jailer, he is the target of a vicious organization which wants to use him as a guinea pig for dangerous chemicals. If left unchecked, the conspiracy will not only have tragic consequences for Christian but will also draw the attention of the worldwide media. As the nefarious plot thickens, Christian will find himself drawn into a maze of devious circumstances and his ultimate fate.
The film is directed by Luc Jacquet and features both Spanish and English language subtitles. The storyline is gripping and graphic even for the youngest viewers. When you first glance at the screen, the audience will be taken in by the dark, ominous colors and the suspenseful music and noises. However, the graphic and occasionally disturbing scenes are necessary to give the film its edge and the impression of genuine adventure. The pace is fast-paced, the story is fast-moving, and the intense fighting and gripping climaxes maintain the momentum throughout.
The Odyssey Movie has proven to be a box-office hit since it debuted in theaters last summer. The film has won six Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Original Score and Best Original Song. It also ranks as the second best picture of the year behind Disney’s The Lion King. The Odyssey has been sold over three million tickets. Perhaps because of the critical acclaim and the box-office success, the Odyssey has a fan base that continues to grow each day.
One of the most compelling elements of the movie is its cast of strong characters. Starring in the film are: Mike Myers as Dr. David Storey, a psychiatrist who specializes in mental health; Mickey Mouse as Gollum, an ancient Egyptian whom Christian later learns has magical powers; and Anne Hathaway as Ariel, a British princess who falls in love with David but refuses to let him touch her. Each of these main characters provides a different glimpse into the personalities of the lead characters as well as of the larger cast of characters. The chemistry between Myers and Mouse is particularly interesting. Both actors do a fantastic job of portraying a slightly deranged sense of humor that makes the movie both fun and entertaining.
The music in the Odyssey movie is another element that elevates the film to a different level. Unlike many animated films of this genre that rely heavily on action and comedy to provide its entertainment, the Odyssey gets much of its content from the characters’ dialogue. The musical numbers are subtle but effective, adding a bit of levity to an otherwise serious tale. Some of the songs are even good. Whether it is ‘The Ancient Mariner’, ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ or ‘Odyssey’ the movie relies on music to help take us away from the seriousness of the situation.
One aspect of the movie that may concern some people is the language. The story is in English, but there are a few instances where the story is written in another language, most notably in a couple of segments set in India. The translation in the story may be problematic for those who do not speak or understand English as a first language. That said, the story is still entertaining and the translation problems do not really affect the quality of the film. It is, in fact, one of the better animated films of the year.
Award winning author J. Wes Watson returns with his second novel. This time, the tale is set in Egypt. The film features voices from Hollywood’s A-list such as Kevin Spacey, Bill Murray, Mel Gibson, and Edward Norton. The Odyssey is well worth the time spent. Trust me, you will not be disappointed.
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