Mongol

Bring your appetite for graphic war violence when you watch Sergei Bodrov’s latest epic ‘Mongol.’ The movie is the first of a trilogy that follows Genghis Khan from his birth in 1192AD ’til his death. This first installment follows partly history, and partly fable and explains how Genghis rose to power. The film supposedly follows the most respected scholarly accounts of the Khan’s life.

‘Mongol’ was Kazakhstan’s official entry in the Best Foreign Film catagory for 2007and won a nomination. The scope of the film is so wide, that some of the war scenes required 1500 horses and riders. Several of the locations where the film was shot were so remote, that the crew had to build roads in order to access them. Bodrov’s insistence on such extravagances paid off. The cinematography is breathtaking. Rogier Stoffers (Bad News Bears) and Sergei Trofimov (Night Watch, Day Watch) deftly take control of the camera and make on-screen poetry with shots that will blow you away.

Bodrov shows Genghis (known as a youth as Tedmujin) in a different light than how he’s usually perceived today. The film shows Genghis almost as a philanthropist, and dedicated family man. This first film follows closely the love affair between the soon-to-be ruler and the love of his life and father of his children. Believe what you will about the larger than life character from history, but ‘Mongol’ is quality escapism: an exotic saga that compels, moves and envelops us with its grand and captivating story.

★★★☆

Playing at Broadway Centre Cinemas.
The film is in Mongolian and subtitled.

Rottentomatoes score: 88%

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