10,000 B.C. Review
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At this time last year, Zack Snyder’s 300 broke all kinds of box office records and became a fanboy favorite, thanks to its endless CGI battles. So writer/director Roland Emmerich figured he’d jump on the CGI-epic bandwagon and try to lure 300’s mammoth fanboy following back to the theaters. But apparently no one told Emmerich that, in order to really cash in, he’d actually have to make a movie that’s worth seeing.

Like 300, 10,000 B.C. isn’t exactly heavy on plot. It’s the story of a young hunter named D’Leh (Steven Strait) and his undying love for the beautiful, blue-eyed Evolet (Camilla Belle—who, just for the record, looks just like Lindsay Lohan). When several members of D’Leh’s tribe (including Evolet) are captured by fierce warriors on horses, D’Leh and his uncle, Tic’Tic (Cliff Curtis), decide to rescue them.

There are some other bits of story thrown in there, too. There’s something about a prophecy…something about D’Leh being “The One”…something about D’Leh’s father abandoning the tribe…blah, blah, blah. But who cares about all the story stuff when you’ve got cool CGI battles, right?

But wait…where are the battles? Where are the big, scary beasts? Didn’t 10,000 B.C. promise lots of battles and big, scary beasts? But, in actuality, there’s really only one real battle. Sure, it’s a pretty cool battle, but it’s just one battle. And when it comes to big, scary beasts, there’s actually just a herd of big, furry elephant things, a bunch of overgrown ostriches, and a giant, cuddly kitty cat.

Granted, the effects aren’t bad (though they’re not flawless, either)—and there’s a decent amount of eye candy. But the really interesting parts of the movie are few and far between—and while you’re sitting around, munching your popcorn and waiting for something cool to happen, you’ll have a lot of time to think. During that time, you’ll ponder all sorts of things, like Why does this prehistoric tribe speak English? or How did one random tribesman manage to learn the language of every single tribe they encounter on their journey? or even How is it that these guys can travel on foot through big, snowy mountains, on through a giant desert, and all the way to Egypt in what seems like maybe a week’s time? (Then you might even go home and pull out an atlas, like I did, and you’ll be even more annoyed.)

10,000 B.C. may look pretty cool, but the plot is weak, the acting is often painfully melodramatic, and the whole thing is full of big, gaping holes. It ends up feeling like one of those cheesy movies that your elementary school teachers would let you watch when they didn’t feel like putting a lesson plan together—except, of course, that those movies were historically accurate.

If you’re looking for some prehistoric action that actually feels authentic, pass up this primeval puzzler and rent Apocalypto instead.

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