“I am Jaguar Paw, this is my forest”. A heroic dialog said in the movie, will justify that, there is a ruler in the movie, and he will take care of his forest. Apocalypto directed by Mel Gibson, crafts a village based tribal story with sheer intelligence in hunting and also belief in fate and sooth saying.
The main theme of the movie, is hunting and we see sooner that a tribe comes and captures all the local villagers, killing their wives, parents and take them to enslave them. Here is no hunting of animals, but hunting human beings, or tribal war. Two different groups are in the movie, we know neither of their groups, importance or we have nothing to speak about. One group comes and captures another group. We have another connected story, of main lead’s wife in a cave, who is pregnant and struggling hard to deliver her child, while her husband is caught and enslaved. Soothsayer speaks about the darkness that would come, to the main baddie in the movie. Now we have sort of answered that hero, will escape and protect his village. How he escapes and how he protects his village and his cave stricken wife is the story about.
Characters in the movie are of simple type. We have two main characters, in the movie. One is Jaguar paw and another is his father. His father speaks some heroic dialogs and his son follows his footsteps. When fate intervenes, now his son needs to rule the village and save all the people. We have no effective narration, about their life style. We just see some funny accents, and some intelligent hunting of animals. The other group has two main guys. Only one is clever enough to suit the role, while the other is another dumb jar head, heading after Jaguar to avenge his son’s death.
Performances in the movie are good enough. There are no mesmerizing performances, since they are village people and tribes. They have their own gesture, and histrionics. The most striking character in the movie is the soothsaying girl. She was awesome with her limited dialogue.
Presentation in the movie is rich. Neatly taken, cleverly directed we see some nice captivating tribal beats that room the viewers in to the movie. We see some awesome cinematography capturing the beauty of the forest area. We see great camera work, panning through slow motions and hard hitting action scenes with sheer intelligence. Editing was much needed and the story looked singly focused.
Mel Gibson should have given insight, about their life style and the way they live, rather than showing humor and some unnecessary scenes in the beginning. It was not a convincing narration.
Bottom line: Neatly crafted, poorly narrated, well planned direction with sheer intelligence in hunting, and hard hitting action scenes, with beautifully captured forest life, gives a treat for eyes.