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Beowulf & Grendel (2006)
Movie Review by The Gravedigger

Beowulf & Grendel (2006) This movie is comparable to a cross between LORD OF THE RINGS and THE 13th WARRIOR. Based on the Scandinavian legend of the 6th Century warrior of the same name, it's the story of a "Troll" who is terrorizing the village of King Hrothgar (Stellan Skarsgard of EXCORCIST PREQUEL), killing off his best warriors. The reason he is doing so, however, is that Hrothgar slew his father when he was young and this is all revenge. When Beowulf (Gerard Butler of DRACULA 2000) comes to this land, things change and a hunt for the Troll begins. But Beowulf senses that there's more to the story than the King is letting on-and that the Troll's actions may be very justified. He becomes friends with Selma (Sarah Polley of DAWN OF THE DEAD remake) who is viewed as the local witch, and she confides in him that Grendel (the name of the Troll) protects her from the men who would rape her. There's also a very good reason he protects her, which we discover at the end of the movie. As the movie progresses Beowulf perceives Grendel more and more as a human than a monster, but must ultimately chase him away or kill him. When Grendel's mother appears, however, we are introduced to much more of a monstrous creature.

What I liked about this movie is that it portrays Grendel, the Troll, as more of an early form of man (such as Neanderthal, as did THE 13TH WARRIOR), one of the last of his kind. He's hairy, incredibly strong and leaves a very bad odor when he urinates (like a bigfoot supposedly does). There are not a lot of special effects here, mostly the aftermath of some of the slayings, but the scenery and locations are beautiful and as much a part of the story as are the people.

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Rating: 7.8 out of 10.0 - 4 votes cast total
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