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The Last Legion

A load of poppycock
By TOM MEEK  |  August 22, 2007
2.0 2.0 Stars

VIDEO: Watch the trailer for The Last Legion.

If Laurence Olivier tried to maintain his Shakespearian mien doing Conan the Barbarian, he couldn’t look any more uncomfortable than the cast of The Last Legion. Colin Firth plays General Aurelius and Ben Kingsley does his best as the sorcerer Ambrosinus, two diehard loyalists serving the last Caesar (Thomas Sangster), a mere boy, after Rome is sacked by the Goths in the fifth century. They propose to save him by retreating to the last Roman outpost, Britannia. Then matters get a little complicated, since the film is based on Valerio Manfredi’s novel, which tries to hitch Arthurian lore to the fall of the Roman Empire the same way The Da Vinci Code rescripted Jesus’s bloodline. The battle scenes look ho-hum in the wake of 300, as director Doug Lefler sticks stolidly to the old school. Firth’s grizzled soldier, however, holds the poppycock together, and Bollywood bombshell Aishwarya Rai holds the eye as warrior and love interest.
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