Ridley Scott, renowned for his cinematic mastery, has delivered yet another compelling piece with his latest movie Napoleon, blending historical epic with melodrama.
‘Napoleon’ movie review: Five things to expect from Ridley Scott’s latest masterpiece
Known for his epic storytelling in films like Gladiator, Scott is back, and here’s what you can expect from this historical drama:
1. A Blend of Epic History and Melodrama
First things first, Napoleon isn’t your typical dry historical biopic. Think of it as a historical epic meets addictive melodrama. Scott has woven a narrative that’s as grandiose as it is emotionally charged.
It’s the kind of movie that seamlessly transitions from the blood and thunder of battlefields to Napoleon’s more personal, human side.
Expect a film that knows how to deliver punchy, cinematic visuals along with a dose of fun.
2. Artistic Liberty with Historical Facts
While Napoleon kicks off with true historical events, like Marie Antoinette’s beheading, don’t expect a documentary-style recount.
Scott takes creative liberties, filling in the gaps with imaginative interpretations of key moments in French history. It’s history with a Ridley Scott twist, which means it’s more about the essence than the minute details.
3. Dynamic Performances by Phoenix and Kirby
Joaquin Phoenix as Napoleon is a sight to behold, but it’s Vanessa Kirby as Empress Joséphine who really brings a unique voice to this film.
Their performances might not be 100% historically accurate, but they perfectly match the film’s melodramatic, often humorous tone. Their on-screen chemistry is the heart of the movie, offering a deep dive into their complex relationship.
4. A Visual and Emotional Rollercoaster
Ready for some eye candy? Ridley Scott’s go-to cinematographer, Dariusz Wolski, ensures that every frame, from battlefield brutality to sweeping landscapes, is a visual feast.
The film’s battle sequences are as gruelling as they are mesmerising. And with a runtime that flies by, you’re in for an engaging watch.
5. Stellar Supporting Cast and a Promise of More
Apart from Phoenix and Kirby, the film features outstanding performances from the likes of Matthew Needham, Tahar Rahim, and Paul Rhys. Plus, there’s talk of a four-hour director’s cut that could add even more depth to this already rich narrative.
Napoleon is Ridley Scott doing what he does best – crafting a visually stunning, emotionally gripping piece that blurs the line between historical accuracy and cinematic drama.
It’s a film that challenges, entertains, and stays with you long after the credits roll.
The film debuts in US theatres on Wednesday, 22 November 2023, with a South African premiere slated for Friday. According to Discussing Film, the epic will land on Apple TV+ either later this year or in early 2024.