There Be Dragons Reviews

  • Sep 17, 2016

    Excellent movie. Has a lot of relationship plits and sub plots all under the backdrop of civil war.

    Excellent movie. Has a lot of relationship plits and sub plots all under the backdrop of civil war.

  • Jan 26, 2016

    Oh, dear god, why, oh why do they still make movies with popular actors doing bad accents? It's like a a bad SNL sketch.

    Oh, dear god, why, oh why do they still make movies with popular actors doing bad accents? It's like a a bad SNL sketch.

  • Jun 27, 2015

    The story of Father Josemaria Escriva and the Opus Dei movement was an important development of the 20th Century, and "There Be Dragons" gives us a dramatized depiction of the group's struggle to survive during the Spanish Civil War. "There Be Dragons" is engrossing. The battle scenes are uneven, but some succeed in creating hellish images, The movie's theme of unconditional love & forgiveness gets muddled by uneven pacing in the final act of the story.

    The story of Father Josemaria Escriva and the Opus Dei movement was an important development of the 20th Century, and "There Be Dragons" gives us a dramatized depiction of the group's struggle to survive during the Spanish Civil War. "There Be Dragons" is engrossing. The battle scenes are uneven, but some succeed in creating hellish images, The movie's theme of unconditional love & forgiveness gets muddled by uneven pacing in the final act of the story.

  • Sep 20, 2014

    Story about Opus Dei's founder which advocates his work through a much incoherent parallel story of the crimes committed during the Spanish Civil War and the today's stormy relationship of a son and his father. Most of the performing is pretty bad, maybe also empowered by the clear difficulties that many of the Spanish actors have to do so in English, their strong accent when speaking and the grandiloquent dialogues and monologues in the script.

    Story about Opus Dei's founder which advocates his work through a much incoherent parallel story of the crimes committed during the Spanish Civil War and the today's stormy relationship of a son and his father. Most of the performing is pretty bad, maybe also empowered by the clear difficulties that many of the Spanish actors have to do so in English, their strong accent when speaking and the grandiloquent dialogues and monologues in the script.

  • Jun 01, 2014

    A great big plodder, Joffe's quasi religious biopic-cum-war epic is unfocused and undercooked. Sure, we have an all star cast, solid production values and a moving score, but the attempt to balance these two sides just doesn't work. What does it say when the life of a religious icon, the main plot no less, is less interesting than the time and nation it's set in?

    A great big plodder, Joffe's quasi religious biopic-cum-war epic is unfocused and undercooked. Sure, we have an all star cast, solid production values and a moving score, but the attempt to balance these two sides just doesn't work. What does it say when the life of a religious icon, the main plot no less, is less interesting than the time and nation it's set in?

  • Mar 18, 2014

    A Spanish journalist, Roberto Torres (Dougray Scott), is trying to mend his relation with his dying father, Manolo Torres (Wes Bentley), who took part in the Spanish Civil War. Roberto discovers through his investigations that his father was a close childhood friend of Josemaría Escrivá (Charlie Cox), a candidate for sainthood, with whom he had a complicated relationship. Manolo became a soldier during the Spanish Civil War and became obsessed with a beautiful Hungarian revolutionary, Ildiko (Olga Kurylenko). She rejected him and gave herself to a brave militia leader named Oriol. Manolo became jealous and took a path of betrayal which he has suffered from his whole life. This event ultimately reveals the importance and timeless power of forgiveness for Manolo... Roland Joffés "There Be Dragons" explores themes such as betrayal, forgiveness, friendship, and finding the meaning of life in everyday life during the Spanish Civil War of the 1930s. "Reconciliation matters" is the main take away message that Joffe expects from the viewers. Life, he said, is an opportunity to love: "It's a choice, and in making that decision you become free. You do not become free when you hate. The weird thing is when you really love, you feel it like a breath of freedom, you think 'Oh my God, I've chosen this, and it's beautiful'." He emphasized that Christianity is about love and the teaching of St. Josemaria "encourages a spiritual relationship with God in 'very simple things', in cooking a meal, being with one's family, or even having a fight." Joffé states that this is "a film about what it means to be a saint in this day and age." The title refers to its theme exploring the unknown territories of hatred, guilt, and forgiveness, said the producer Ignacio G. Sancha. "There be dragons" is a shorter version of the phrase "here there be dragons" from the Latin hic sunt dracones, an ancient way of denoting in maps a place where there is danger, or an unknown place, a place to be explored. Roland Joffé has given us the fantastic "The Mission" and the equally great "The Killing Fields", and therefore it pains me to see this overdramatised and theatrically overacted piece of film from the same man. With a great backdrop of the horrific Spanish Civil War, Joffé manages to transform "There Be Dragons" to an almost comiclike mish mash with sloppy direction and sloppy acting despite the fact that he obviously had a great budget. Sometimes you almost believe the movie has been dubbed as well... With an estimated budget of $36,000,000, during its opening weekend the film collected $705,537 at the US box office, compared to $1,251,124 in Spain, the film is considered a box office flop. Critics generally praised the film's production values but panned Joffé's screenplay and direction. I disliked this movie from scene one and nothing came to its rescue during the running time. I would love to see a proper historical movie in spanish focused on the Spanish Civil War.

    A Spanish journalist, Roberto Torres (Dougray Scott), is trying to mend his relation with his dying father, Manolo Torres (Wes Bentley), who took part in the Spanish Civil War. Roberto discovers through his investigations that his father was a close childhood friend of Josemaría Escrivá (Charlie Cox), a candidate for sainthood, with whom he had a complicated relationship. Manolo became a soldier during the Spanish Civil War and became obsessed with a beautiful Hungarian revolutionary, Ildiko (Olga Kurylenko). She rejected him and gave herself to a brave militia leader named Oriol. Manolo became jealous and took a path of betrayal which he has suffered from his whole life. This event ultimately reveals the importance and timeless power of forgiveness for Manolo... Roland Joffés "There Be Dragons" explores themes such as betrayal, forgiveness, friendship, and finding the meaning of life in everyday life during the Spanish Civil War of the 1930s. "Reconciliation matters" is the main take away message that Joffe expects from the viewers. Life, he said, is an opportunity to love: "It's a choice, and in making that decision you become free. You do not become free when you hate. The weird thing is when you really love, you feel it like a breath of freedom, you think 'Oh my God, I've chosen this, and it's beautiful'." He emphasized that Christianity is about love and the teaching of St. Josemaria "encourages a spiritual relationship with God in 'very simple things', in cooking a meal, being with one's family, or even having a fight." Joffé states that this is "a film about what it means to be a saint in this day and age." The title refers to its theme exploring the unknown territories of hatred, guilt, and forgiveness, said the producer Ignacio G. Sancha. "There be dragons" is a shorter version of the phrase "here there be dragons" from the Latin hic sunt dracones, an ancient way of denoting in maps a place where there is danger, or an unknown place, a place to be explored. Roland Joffé has given us the fantastic "The Mission" and the equally great "The Killing Fields", and therefore it pains me to see this overdramatised and theatrically overacted piece of film from the same man. With a great backdrop of the horrific Spanish Civil War, Joffé manages to transform "There Be Dragons" to an almost comiclike mish mash with sloppy direction and sloppy acting despite the fact that he obviously had a great budget. Sometimes you almost believe the movie has been dubbed as well... With an estimated budget of $36,000,000, during its opening weekend the film collected $705,537 at the US box office, compared to $1,251,124 in Spain, the film is considered a box office flop. Critics generally praised the film's production values but panned Joffé's screenplay and direction. I disliked this movie from scene one and nothing came to its rescue during the running time. I would love to see a proper historical movie in spanish focused on the Spanish Civil War.

  • Mar 09, 2014

    Self congratulatory Catholic propaganda with a flagrant disregard for historical accuracy, balance, nuance, or decent writing. This is a shame as The Spanish Civil War is a setting rich with stories, but there has yet to be a similarly rich story about it (Pan's Labyrinth is more half-set just after it, and Land and Freedom is Ken Loach's typical 'Loach trumps history' affair). One would imagine that a film set during the most politicised war of the 20th century would manage to mention politics at some point, or even some of the main players, but There Be Dragons is content to drift along on a combination of tedious Christian 'forgiveness' and endless 'stirring' strings (both delivered with the subtlety of the Condor Legion over Guernica). Like so many other historical would-be epics, it's an opportunity missed, with a large enough budget and half decent cast wasted on a questionable character, a ridiculous premise and an appalling script. To be honest, I knew it wasn't going to be good, but I'm still furious it was THIS bad.

    Self congratulatory Catholic propaganda with a flagrant disregard for historical accuracy, balance, nuance, or decent writing. This is a shame as The Spanish Civil War is a setting rich with stories, but there has yet to be a similarly rich story about it (Pan's Labyrinth is more half-set just after it, and Land and Freedom is Ken Loach's typical 'Loach trumps history' affair). One would imagine that a film set during the most politicised war of the 20th century would manage to mention politics at some point, or even some of the main players, but There Be Dragons is content to drift along on a combination of tedious Christian 'forgiveness' and endless 'stirring' strings (both delivered with the subtlety of the Condor Legion over Guernica). Like so many other historical would-be epics, it's an opportunity missed, with a large enough budget and half decent cast wasted on a questionable character, a ridiculous premise and an appalling script. To be honest, I knew it wasn't going to be good, but I'm still furious it was THIS bad.

  • Mar 01, 2014

    Insufferably long and worse, boring. I'm not a Joffe fan really, only watched it for Olga Kurylenko, who was good in her role. The acting is above average, but the story is not very interesting and crawls along at the pace of a slug. I didn't get a feel for these characters, and the Spanish Civil War made no sense at all to me.

    Insufferably long and worse, boring. I'm not a Joffe fan really, only watched it for Olga Kurylenko, who was good in her role. The acting is above average, but the story is not very interesting and crawls along at the pace of a slug. I didn't get a feel for these characters, and the Spanish Civil War made no sense at all to me.

  • Feb 15, 2014

    Interesting story, but it struggles between weak actors/actresses and a soft script.

    Interesting story, but it struggles between weak actors/actresses and a soft script.

  • Oct 22, 2013

    Pretty much irrelevant. Boring and completely unattatching.

    Pretty much irrelevant. Boring and completely unattatching.