OK, so even my regional loyalty can be pushed to its limits.
Citing nothing more than the fact that it had been shot in Namibia as rationale, (it was the biggest budgeted film ever to have shot in southern Africa, employing hundreds of African cast and crew members in the process), I forced Christopher sit through the interminable 10000BC over the weekend.
Director Roland Emmerlich is famous for end of the world movies like Independence Day and the Day After Tomorrow – movies that consider the end of mankind in a sort of no-plot-big-explosion kind of way. Here he attempts to paint the other side of the picture; mankind’s fragile beginnings.
In a brief plot summary, boy loves girl, girl is stolen by nasty (Arab?) slavers, boy unites all the tribes of Earth to rescue girl. (releasing slaves is apparently entirely incidental to his motivation.) The action teeters from spectacular mountains (New Zealand) to spectacular jungle (Thailand) to spectacular desert (Namibia), locations that are populated by scary, flesh-eating ostriches, some cool mammothy things and Africans wearing a variety of hats.
In fairness, I should say I was impressed by the work of the art department; sets, costume, styling, hair and make up were all extremely detailed. It’s just that they made absolutely no sense. But on the whole, there’s no point even beginning to discuss the anachronisms, the bizarre Russian accents, the eyeliner – and I’ve seen better sabre-tooth tigers in National Geographic documentaries.
As a movie, 10000BC reminded me of many other movies – Apocalytpo is one – but more than anything it has the same clunky dialogue, the same hokey-inspirational faux history, the same bad hair as the truly stupefyingly dreadful Battlefield Earth. Only 10000BC doesn’t have John Travolta so it’s much, much worse.
It’s not just me; 10000BC was panned by the critics
However, if you’ve ever wondered how Film sets remain operational in these electricity-starved times, here’s a link to a story at the Filmmakers’ Directory.