April 5th, 2007

Goldsmith (film composer)


This is one of the most interesting scenes from The Thirteenth Warrior. The main character Ahmed, played by Antonio Banderas, is an exiled Arab who is thrust into a mission several Vikings undertake to rescue a town from some nameless threat. Ahmed doesn't speak their language; this could have been a tripping point for the narrative, but it is actually handled in the film with great panache. Furthermore, it features some great Jerry Goldsmith music; the first cue is called "Semantics" heard is on the album, while the second cue heard is the unreleased "One God."

Gets kind of rowdy, I guess, but should be work safe.
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Michael Crichton's book Eaters of the Dead (which, with a few exceptions, the existing cut of the film does not deviate from terribly much) was written from Ahmed's point of view. It is, in fact, written as a memoir of the character himself who accompanied these men. Why an Arab? Because they were the only people in that area of the world who would have been able to document an event like this one. Eaters of the Dead, and, by extension The Thirteenth Warrior, are meant to portray a de-mythified version of "Beowulf" (the leader of the rescuers is named Buliwyf). It therefore represents a deconstruction of classical rhetoric; a stripping away of the elements and devices that the oral tradition required for the story to survive. The main character had to be literate in order to create a document that could be given any historical credence, which is what the book is attempting to emulate.