Average Rating: 8.7/10
Reviews Counted: 20
Fresh: 18 | Rotten: 2
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Average Rating: 7/10
Critic Reviews: 8
Fresh: 6 | Rotten: 2
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Average Rating: 4.3/5
User Ratings: 1,507
The chef d'ouevre of legendary French filmmaker Abel Gance, the 235-minute Napoleon was supposed to have been the first installment in a multipart film study of the French military hero. Each of the film's set pieces is treated like a movie in itself: the opening pillow fights and snowball battles, staged while Napoleon is still a schoolboy (played by Russian youth Vladimir Roudenko), are choreographed on a scale worthy of D.W. Griffith. The plot proper begins with Napoleon's adult years. From
Feb 7, 1929 Wide
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Edmond Van Daële
Josephine de Beauham...
Gen. Lazare Hoche
Vicomte de Beauharna...
Pozzo di Borgo
La Bussiere Eater of...
Rouget de Lisle
Napoleon as boy
W. Percy Day
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There is in this edition of the picture an effort to cover too many historical incidents and the consequence is that quite a number of the passages are confused.
Like D.W. Griffith, Orson Welles, Steven Spielberg, and George Lucas, but mostly James Cameron, Gance understood the thrill of the cinematic event and had the hubris to bring it off.
Napoleon is the last great silent epic. We will not see its like again.
Gance uses techniques not much associated with silent film, like a hand-held camera, multiple superimpositions, split split screen, rapid-fire editing and flashbacks to rivet the audience's attention and bring history to vivid life.
It turned out to be a commercial flop because the film cost too much to make.
Gance's use of subjective camera was almost recklessly ambitious in its bid to give the spectator the most visceral viewing sensation, while his skill in blending and multiplying images was unprecedented.
In this case the form itself is equal to the subject. For Gance and for Napoleon, there are no small gestures.
the finest moments are the quieter ones that paint a more human picture of the adult Napoleon
An extraordinary artifact from another culture, a mythology as remarkable and as alien as the Epic of Gilgamesh or the Icelandic Eddas.
Fascinating, experimental, ahead of its time
Abel Gance's visionary silent epic Napoleon is a dazzling display of cinematic virtuosity.
Audience Reviews for Napoléon
- Napoleon Bonaparte: If you could understand the dream that fires my soul, you would all follow me!
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Latest News on Napoléon
November 13, 2013:Rupert Sanders to Direct Napoleon Biopic
The Warner Bros. project doesn't have a title, but it'll depict the famous French general "almost as...