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Review: ‘Gods of Egypt’ Is a Lot Better Than It Should Be

gods of egypt review

Directed by Alex Proyas, Gods of Egypt is a summer blockbuster conspicuously vying for your attention at the tail end of winter. Had this film been released in July, its long running time and frenetic fantasy set pieces may have been found a larger audience, and deservedly so.

Gods of Egypt is a reimagining of the Egyptian mythology as if it was reality (though the true mythology is hardly represented here), where the aforementioned state is the center of a flat earth guarded by Ra, the God of light, who must fight off an otherworldly demon “night after night.” One of the charms of Egypt is watching some of these outlandish concepts come to life in bold, albeit cheaply looking, ways.

The gods of this mythology live alongside the humans, and a hostile takeover by the king’s jealous brother (Set, played by Gerard Butler) throws the entire land into chaos. With the help of a plucky mortal thief, the king’s son (Horus, played by Nicolaj Coster-Waldau) must regain his godly powers stolen by Set and take his rightful throne.

Strangely, the plot is a clumsy patchwork of familiar 90s Disney movies, including The Lion King’s plot surrounding a banished prince losing the throne to his uncle, Aladdin as an Egyptian street rat, and some shades of Hercules, with one of the love interests being tied to the underworld.

In fact, the only character who feels unique and somewhat authentic for the African setting is played by Chadwick Boseman, a superb actor who delivers a sadly atrocious performance here.

Much of Gods of Egypt feels like a video game ripped out of a PlayStation 2, with frequent puzzles, fetch quests, and high-concept battles interspersing a world that feels massive and mysterious. But also like a video game, Gods of Egypt is filled with shoddy and even jittery cut scenes that are inexplicable for a movie that cost $140 million to make.

Alex Proyas is probably best known for Dark City, and though he wasn’t one of the writers for Gods of Egypt, his unique vision is still apparent in the script. The movie itself is rarely plain, and when it swings wide, it sometimes hits big. But many other times, the film misses greatly, and your odds of finding charm in its brazenness is about 50/50.

Perhaps if the Gods of Egypt embraced its clunky nature and dated visual style, it would be easier to recommend as a low-budget fantasy inspired by Immortals or Clash of the Titans. Though while it’s certainly more watchable than Wrath of the Titans, this is a fantasy epic you’re probably better off streaming at home.

Grade: C

Extra Credits:

  • Gerard Butler is great when he embraces true villainy, but his work in Egypt is weirdly restrained, as if the director cared more about us sympathizing with Set than fearing him.
  • Nicolaj Coster-Waldau is one of the weak points of the film. He gives it his all physically, but he’s not even trying to act beyond Jamie Lannister territory.
  • One of the film’s major failures is lack of immersion early on. It takes a while for you to shut out the fact that no one in the film appears or speaks like an Egyptian. The cacophony of varying European accents don’t help either.
  • Certain aspects of this film are really quite good, thanks to some of the visual imagery and absurd mythological concepts being brought to life. And I was massively entertained enough to overlook some of the movie’s silliness. This “B” movie is frankly only downgraded because of its rushed third act and bad effects.
  • Why am I a sucker for the Hero’s Journey? For whatever reason, I’m never fatigued by this, but if you are, then Gods of Egypt will do you no favors.
  • The film’s biggest flaw? Easy: if you’re going to go all out with Egyptian mythology, why not use it? Barely anything in this film flows from what is actually a fascinating universe of gods, instead sticking to Greek mythology cliches for whatever reason.

 

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Game of Thrones S5E9 Recap: Rumble in the Meerena

game of thrones dance with dragons

Hey Throners, it’s time for another Now Conspiring podcast featuring this week’s new episode of HBO’s Game of Thrones. The episode is called “The Dance with Dragons,” so as you can expect…well, Spoilers if you haven’t watched the episode yet.

I’m joined by my podcasting small council, Adonis Gonzalez, Maria Garcia, and Kayla Savage, as we explore the world of Planetos in true Conspiring fashion.

Go on…Game of Thrones S5E9 Recap: Rumble in the Meerena

The Pixar Detective, Chapter 14: “World of Cretins”

Hey everyone! Welcome to The Pixar Detective, a serial novel I put together based on the Pixar Theory. The following is a fictional story that explains the theory that all of the Pixar movies are connected and exist within the same universe, using original characters and artwork. The story answers a lot of questions you may have about this theory, but through its own ongoing narrative.

The story originally launched in April, and since then we’ve finished Part 1 and Part 2!

Both are available as iBooks on iTunes, which you can check out here. If you can’t use iBooks, can also download the PDF versions:

Part 1: (PDF version)

Part 2: (PDF version)

Once you’re finished, check back to our Table of Contents, where we’ll be continuing the story through Part 3. A new chapter is released every two weeks on Tuesdays. And please be sure to leave your feedback in the comments for us to read through. Enjoy!

chapter 14 pixar detective

PREVIOUSLY, ON THE PIXAR DETECTIVE!

To find their missing friend, Stevin, Wallaby, and their super powered friend Sadie, along with mischievous monster, Mr. Sumner, are on the search for Sumner’s future self. A monster who may know what happened to their friend, Mary.

sadie-2

 

Currently in the year 2001, our heroes have tracked “Other Sumner” to the house of a girl named Darla, but they’ve been stopped by a group of “babysitters,” who are secretly students from a mysterious academy known as Pixar University. 

chapter 11 pixar detective

Among them are Cara and Logan, who are descendants of the infamous superhero line known as “The Incredibles.” Logan, a girl who can manipulate fire, has attacked Sadie, the world’s first super, leaving Stevin, Wallaby and Mr. Sumner to contend with the other “babysitters.”

 

Use the prompt on the sidebar to subscribe for updates or just follow me and Kayla on Twitter to stay connected – @JonNegroni – @KaylaTheSavage

The Pixar Detective, Chapter 11: “2319”

Hey everyone! Welcome to The Pixar Detective, a serial novel I put together based on the Pixar Theory. The following is a fictional story that explains the theory that all of the Pixar movies are connected and exist within the same universe, using original characters and artwork. The story answers a lot of questions you may have about this theory, but through its own ongoing narrative.

The story originally launched in April, and since then we’ve finished Part 1 and Part 2!

Both are available as iBooks on iTunes, which you can check out here. If you can’t use iBooks, can also download the PDF versions:

Part 1: (PDF version)

Part 2: (PDF version)

Once you’re finished, check back to our Table of Contents, where we’ll be continuing the story through Part 3. A new chapter is released every two weeks on Tuesdays. And please be sure to leave your feedback in the comments for us to read through. Enjoy!

chapter 11 pixar detective

 

Previously, on the Pixar Detective

pixar detective part 1 coverIn the year 2014, two kids embarked on a mission to find their missing friend, Mary. The friends, Stevin Parker and Wallaby Jones, teamed up with their mysterious teacher, Alec Azam, who mentored Mary in the arts of magic and traveling through time by use of doors.

Along the way, Stevin and Wallaby gained new allies, including a monster from another world and a girl with dangerous superpowers. Eventually, they were forced through a door that would lead them to the location of their next clue: Sydney, Australia.

 

Use the prompt on the sidebar to subscribe for updates or just follow me and Kayla on Twitter to stay connected – @JonNegroni – @KaylaTheSavage

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