64 of 69 people found the following review helpful
1612 mixes history with mystical and legendary elements,
This review is from: 1612 [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] (DVD)
1612 takes place during a time of trouble in Russia and is loosely based on history. It could be called the "time of trouble" because a foreign army is occupying the country but also because there isn't clear leadership to bring them out of the mess. The film doesn't try to be a strict historical film but an adventure that will capture the hearts of the audience. The movie mixes history with mystical and legendary elements; namely, one reoccurring subject is that of unicorns. Even with that said, I could say with a straight face that it doesn't go too far with this into fairly tale land as most parts with unicorns are in dreams or visions.
Polish invaders murdered the royal family but the Polish Hetman (Michal Zebrowski) spared the life of Princess Kseniya, whom he loves and sees as a way to become Czar himself. Andrei (Pyotr Kislov), who also loves Kseniya, ends up as a servant and then mercenary of the Polish Hetman, witnessed the murders and makes it his goal to overthrow the invaders and free the Princess. The love triangle between the three is the crux of much of the conflict.
The villains of this story are the Poles, who wear armor with wings giving them the look of angels, but they strike with fierceness that is more demonic than angelic. Interestingly enough, the Polish Hetman is actually a famous Polish actor, which adds a bit to the realism to the film. To some degree this film is anti-Polish in nature and is not entirely historically accurate but we are reminded that this movie isn't a documentary from time to time by the unicorns. Even with that said, I still think the movie is a lot of fun.
1612 rivals the best historical films in both story and special effects. The action doesn't slow down between the duels, skirmishes, and sieges. I think 1612 particularly excels in showing cannon warfare, in which there is quite a bit of in this movie. I would say 1612 would get an "R" rating by American standards for showing some nudity and quite a bit of violence that doesn't spare us the goriness of war.