Welcome to the Historical Fiction Online forums: a friendly place to discuss, review and discover historical fiction.
If this is your first visit, please be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above.
You will have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.
To start viewing posts, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

The Eagle (of the Ninth)

User avatar
Ludmilla
Bibliophile
Posts: 1346
Joined: September 2008
Location: Georgia USA

Post by Ludmilla » Fri February 11th, 2011, 3:53 pm

Looks like the reviews are lukewarm to not very encouraging. I'd have to see the movie to judge the criticism about American English. Afterall, do they think British English is any more appropriate for the setting of Romano-Britain of the 2nd century? I suppose if they are implying American usages are ridiculously anachronistic in their context and attitude then I can accept that as a valid criticism but otherwise it seems irrelevant. Looking at the cast list and summary, looks like they have made some changes from the book... I don't see Cottia at all (the Iceni girl who lived next to Uncle Aquila, e.g.). I also strongly suspect they've over-capitalized on the master-slave aspect of the relationship between Esca and Marcus. I think I'll wait till this one is released on DVD.

P.S. -- after reading through a few more of those reviews I'd like to throw some rotten tomatoes at some of those reviewers who want to insert inappropriate political messages into their movie review. Since I haven't seen the film, I don't know what kind of message it leaves with the watcher, but some of these reviewers have a distorted view of the book's message (of course looks like very few of them would have read the book anyway). Gah....
Last edited by Ludmilla on Fri February 11th, 2011, 4:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Margaret
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 2440
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: I can't answer this in 100 characters. Sorry.
Favourite HF book: Checkmate, the final novel in the Lymond series
Preferred HF: Literary novels. Late medieval and Renaissance.
Location: Catskill, New York, USA
Contact:

Post by Margaret » Fri February 11th, 2011, 6:51 pm

It's quite possibly this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/ahistoryofthewo...QFKEUnhnEJkAAw

Note the statement at the end of the description, which says that it is NOT a military standard.
In the novel, though, the eagle was gold, and it was from a military standard.

Do read the book before seeing the movie, if you're planning to do both. Although I haven't seen the movie (just the trailers), I'm convinced the book is better, and it would be a shame to blunt the suspense in the novel (or have blue Britons with Mohawk haircuts forced into your imagination) by seeing the movie first and knowing ahead of time how things are going to turn out.
Browse over 5000 historical novel listings (probably well over 5000 by now, but I haven't re-counted lately) and over 700 reviews at www.HistoricalNovels.info

annis
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 4585
Joined: August 2008

Post by annis » Fri February 11th, 2011, 9:12 pm

The Silchester Eagle was Rosemary Sutcliff's inspiration for the Eagle of the Ninth, but she transformed it into a military standard for her novel. She did make her fictional eagle standard wingless, though, just like the Silchester Eagle :)

Image

The Roman ampitheatre at Calleva Atrebatum (Silchester) also inspired the scene where Marcus and Esca first encounter each other, at a gladiatorial contest in the arena there.
http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/days ... hitheatre/
Last edited by annis on Sat February 12th, 2011, 12:35 am, edited 9 times in total.

annis
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 4585
Joined: August 2008

Post by annis » Fri February 11th, 2011, 9:33 pm

Posted by Ludmilla
I'd have to see the movie to judge the criticism about American English.
There's a post here at the Rosemary Sutcliff.com blog which discusses director Kevin Macdonald's rationale for using Americans (and American accents) for his movie Romans in The Eagle
http://rosemarysutcliff.com/2011/01/24/ ... cents-why/

User avatar
LoveHistory
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3751
Joined: September 2008
Location: Wisconsin, USA
Contact:

Post by LoveHistory » Fri February 11th, 2011, 11:59 pm

Entertainment Weekly has a rather positive review for this one.

User avatar
Sintra
Reader
Posts: 58
Joined: March 2011
Location: Moscow, Russia

Post by Sintra » Mon March 28th, 2011, 6:49 pm

Saw it a while ago in the movies and i really enjoyed it.

There's nothing extraordinary about the movie itself, but as an adventure it's entertaing and interesting. I haven't read the original novel, but now i think i have to :)

The scenery is very beautiful, the soundtrack is great, and i love Jamie Bell in his every motion picture, and The Eagle is no exception.

I will defeinely watch it again!

SGM
Compulsive Reader
Posts: 699
Joined: March 2010

Post by SGM » Mon March 28th, 2011, 8:04 pm

I can only, and have, described it as "Last of the Mohicans" meets "Sound the Pibroch". I was embarrassed that it was my suggestion to see it.

But it was nice to see Jamie Bell in a largish part again.

Yes, I had read the book but many many years ago. I wish I could remember the BBC version better but that, again, was many many years ago.

There is, however, still in existance, an audio version available of the same done by BBC radio.
Last edited by SGM on Mon March 28th, 2011, 8:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

annis
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 4585
Joined: August 2008

Post by annis » Tue March 29th, 2011, 2:43 am

Sadly the BBC (as they apparently did back then) wiped the Eagle of the Ninth tapes and reused them, so the series could only be resurrected if someone somewhere had kept a copy, and it would have to be in excellent condition, probably not likely as VHS tapes deteriorate over time. The Beeb apparently did the same thing with a series about Hereward the Wake which I'd also have liked to see, darn it!

SGM
Compulsive Reader
Posts: 699
Joined: March 2010

Post by SGM » Tue March 29th, 2011, 3:30 pm

[quote=""annis""]Sadly the BBC (as they apparently did back then) wiped the Eagle of the Ninth tapes and reused them, so the series could only be resurrected if someone somewhere had kept a copy, and it would have to be in excellent condition, probably not likely as VHS tapes deteriorate over time. The Beeb apparently did the same thing with a series about Hereward the Wake which I'd also have liked to see, darn it![/quote]

Nothing is quite as tragic as the loss of Pete and Dud but I undertstand that these and presumably their version of the Eagle were not VHS but reels and often they were just thrown into skips from whence they were relocated to people's homes which is why we still have some. the beeb now have a policy of borrowing these items back with no questions asked and returnning tje item once copied. So there is still a chance. The radio dramatisation does still exist and is avilale at Amazon.

I did see Hereward the Wake and just about every childrens' classic they produced. it was a tragedy when they stopped doing them.

Anthony Andrews in the Fortunes of Nigel and later as Steerforth in David Copperfield, Woodstock, Last of the Mohicans, all of the Three Musketeer novels, Pride and Prejudice (of course), Stalky & Co and loads and loads more. From about the age of 8, they tended to influence what book I read next.
Last edited by SGM on Tue March 29th, 2011, 7:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Currently reading - Emergence of a Nation State by Alan Smith

User avatar
Sintra
Reader
Posts: 58
Joined: March 2011
Location: Moscow, Russia

Post by Sintra » Tue March 29th, 2011, 6:50 pm

[quote=""SGM""]I wish I could remember the BBC version better but that, again, was many many years ago.
[/quote]

It's so sad that many great shows were lost this way. I know that there was a tv series (14 episodes or so) on BBC about Henry II, Eleanor of Aquitaine and their children back in 1973, but it's impossible to find it now. I guess it was called The Devil's Crown.

And i'm still mad at BBC for not releasing on DVD their mini-series Servants. I watched it on one of the russian channels back in 2003 or so, and it's a shame that it was forgotten. It's a relatively new show, so i'm frustrated. :(

And Little Dorritt's soundtrack was very good. But i can't say more since i've only heard it in the show and it's not available in any form :mad:

Post Reply

Return to “Movies, Television, Radio, and Music”