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4.1 out of 5 stars57
4.1 out of 5 stars
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62 of 65 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 20 August 2008
Less a review of the entertaining and liberal adaptation of the epic poem and more of a general 'heads up' to the DVD quality of the 2007 re-release by Boulevard Entertainment and Sparrowhawk Distribution.

Lumbered with a fuzzy sleeve (making the DVD look like a knock-off copy) the disc is utterly bare bones. No chapter selection even, though you can skip ahead to various points in the film. A bit of a nuisance if you don't have the luxury of watching it all the way through and need to find your place again. Also, the picture quality - though crisp - seems quite badly pixelated in places (especially on water - and there's a lot of it in 'The Odyssey!') causing the image to appear as if it is 'halting' repeatedly for a half second or so. No major problem considering the price, but the fact that there are NO SUBTITLES is a bit of a swine also.

I thought it worth bringing this to customers attention because the 2 part series is ridiculously entertaining and older kids (and adults) will love it. As other reviewers have pointed out - if you're looking for a high brow and 'serious' version of the Odyssey, walk on by!

It's well acted by the always great Armand Assante and Eric Roberts is a suitably nasty villain. Other acting honours veer between the distinctly average to OTT. And the sight of Greta Scacchi getting a bit flustered in the sea is somewhere between neat poetic metaphor and the utterly ridiculous. More the latter.

There's a bit of gore in both parts (part 2 has the fair share) but - technical issues aside - it's well worth the purchase. Very enjoyable.
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96 of 101 people found the following review helpful
on 21 September 2004
A great adaptation of the book we have come to know and love. This is not a scholarly work for academics but an entertainment for us plebs as a TV mini-series.
Classics students will instantly be delighted during the opening sequence with cunning Odysseus accepting the dutiful Penelope's child as his own by his 'holding up' of baby Telemachus. Armand Assante is superb as the clever hero, the portrayal of virgin Goddess Athene with that eerie look and accent by Isabella Rossellini is excellent and what older man wouldn't dream of Greta Scaachi, and that bed built around that olive tree, waiting for him?
There are motifs missing and some things that could have been done in a better way but The Odyssey is well worth the money for three hours of classic adventure story.
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
Pared down from a TV mini-series, this is a very superior adaptation of Homer's classic epic which sticks nicely to the plot and delivers stunning scenery with good characterisation.
Isabella Rossellini manages to catch the lights just right to give us 'Athena of the flashing eyes', while Armand Assante is excellent as the storm-tossed Odysseus.
Greek myth is hard to get right, and last year's CGI wonders are next year's embarrassments. The effects here are nicely underplayed, and, with the exception of a an overglowing Hermes, they work well. Director Andrei Konchalovsky worked hard to make Homer's story the substance of the film, rather than taking liberties with the plot. For my money, this makes this a film to watch and rewatch.
I really can't say enough good things about this film - TV movies rarely reach this kind of standard. I suppose it would be nicer to be able to see the entire mini-series, but, even so, this is a gem.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 16 August 2008
I originally watched this on a Sky's Hallmark channel when it first came out years ago and loved every minute of it so much so I waited for the DVD to be released so I could own it and watch it again.
Its not 100% accurate to the book at the beginning and in any case very few films are but don't let that put you off as I thought this film followed reasonably closly Homer's book of the same name. Odysseus's cunning battle with penelope's suitors was spot on!
Armand Assante is very well cast along with Greta Scacchi and Isabella Rossellini as Athena is very much a goddess although too brief with her enchanting eyes and sexy voice.
This is one of my favourite films on dvd and I can't imagine anyone not enjoying it as it has something that would appeal to everyone.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 29 July 2005
This is superb. I share the quibbles of previous reviewers - Hermes is a bit ridiculous - but the refusal to rely on impressive cgi effects is refreshing and admirable.
The cast is superb - Isabella Rosselini especially - and the humanity and determination of Odysseus are splendidly portrayed. The original is treated with respect, even within the constraints of time and medium.
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on 9 April 2006
What can I say? I remember watching this as part of my A-level studies a few years back and being thoroughly entertained by it. Possibly for all the wrong reasons, but satisfied nonetheless.
If you're expecting a lofty, classical affair in line with I, Claudius of Gladiator, you will be disappointed. Similarly, the interpretation of the original text veers in places, but not to a point of distraction for casual viewers.
Ultimately, whilst some of the acting is cringeworthy in places, what you have here is a wonderfully arch and over-the-top presentation of one of the best Greek epics. Slick, silly and packed with special effects and indulgent performances, this is Classics for the Xena generation. And, with so few takes on the material available on DVD, this is certainly a worthwhile purchase.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 8 October 2013
This story of the wanderings of Odysseus after the fall of Troy sticks very close to the original saga. It has a great feel of an old story and has not been intruded on by somebody's attempt to modernise it. The main parts are played by well-known actors who bring their characters to life, and Armand Assante as Odysseus is superb. I would highly recommend it to anyone who loves the old myths as an original fantasy adventure.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 May 2004
A thoroughly enjoyable and faithful version of Homer’s classic. This made-for-TV movie does lack the dazzling effects of Hollywood productions (though it’s effects are still good), and some of the supporting actors are a little hit and miss in my opinion – though Christopher Lee is wonderful in his brief scene– this is an excellent film, and far closer to the original material than the big Hollywood epics like the recent and disappointing “Troy”. This version of the Odyssey does have a few flaws, and there are some cuts in the story, no doubt for time reasons, but it still is well worth a look, is totally enjoyable, and is a worthy addition to any collection.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on 22 March 2001
A fantastic film about how after the Trojan war, a Greek king wants to go home but only one thing stands in his way - Poseidon, the god of the sea who wants to punish Odysseus as much as he can. A classic film for everyone who likes Greek myths and for those who don't. Will Odysseus return to his wife after fifteen years before she marries or will Poseidon stop him? A tale of adventure, courage, loyalty and treachery that will keep you on the edge of your seat for the whole film.
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on 17 February 2013
A very watchable long movie (originally a TV mini-series of two parts). The acting is convincing all round. Turkey works as a basic stand-in for the Greek Islands. It all feels very "dawn of history" authentic, in terms of costuming, sets, and the portrayal of the way-of-life. The lighting and camerawork are workmanlike. There are no modern affectations: no MTV-style rapid cutting or trendy camerawork with wobbly cameras, no preachy insertions of modern political correctness, no hi-gloss costuming, no ponderous voiceover explaining to dummies Where We Are and why it's all So Significant. There are a few annoyances caused by the low budget, though. Some of the special effects and monsters look rather dated, by modern CG standards. Although they always entertain. And three or four scene-setting static shots of Ithica are repeated as scene intros throughout, without any variation. Other than those problems, it's a fine story well told, and is well worth your time. It would be great to see a 2010s "special edition" with better FX overlaid and better scene-setting shots of the Greek islands, then it would be perfect.
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