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"KINGDOM OF HEAVEN"
(2005) (Orlando Bloom, Marton Csokas) (R)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
Mild Extreme Extreme Moderate Extreme
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Mild None Moderate None. None.
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Heavy None Moderate Moderate Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Drama/Action: A young, 12th century widower must deal with treachery and racism when he joins his father and others in The Crusades.
PLOT:
It's 1184 France and times are tough of recent for young blacksmith Balian (ORLANDO BLOOM), as he's not only lost his child, but also his wife who's recently committed suicide. When a man he's never met, Godfrey of Ibeline (LIAM NEESON), shows up to inform the blacksmith that he's the father he never knew and invites him to join his crusade to the Holy Land, Balian initially declines the offer. Realizing he has nothing to lose and thinking his participation might help his wife in the afterworld, he then agrees and sets off with Godfrey, the Hospitaler (DAVID THEWLIS) - a knight-confessor -- and others on their quest.

On their journey, Godfrey is mortally wounded, but he manages to knight his son and make him swear an oath to serve the King of Jerusalem. With the aide of the Hospitaler, Balian proceeds to do just that. Eventually arriving in the Holy Land, Balian meets the king's alluring sister Sibylla (EVA GREEN) and her conniving husband from a prearranged marriage, Guy de Lusignan (MARTON CSOKAS). Since King Baldwin IV (EDWARD NORTON) is dying from leprosy and wears a metal mask to hide his facial deformities, Guy is gunning for the throne, much to the dismay of the King and his right-hand man, Tiberias (JEREMY IRONS).

It doesn't help that Guy is a member of the Knights Templar, and that he and his racist co-conspirator Reynald (BRENDAN GLEESON) don't like the uneasy truce that Baldwin has made with Muslim leader Saladin (GHASSAN MASSOUD). Despite being severely outnumbered by the Muslim army, the two and their followers want to undermine the tenuous relationship, going against the King and Balian's quest to allow pilgrims of all faiths to visit the city. From that point on, and as Guy makes his move, Balian must do what he can to protect the people under his care.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
Those who are fans of someone in the cast, such as Orlando Bloom, may want to, as might those who like sweeping period epics.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
For strong violence and epic warfare.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • ORLANDO BLOOM plays a blacksmith turned knight who swears to serve as his father did for the king in keeping the peace in the Holy Land, but must deal with treachery from others. He must kill various people to accomplish his task (and defend his life) and ends up sleeping with Sibylla.
  • EVA GREEN plays the King's sister who hates her husband from a prearranged marriage, has sex with Balian and wants him to agree to murder Guy to free her from her marriage and save their people from her tyrannical husband should he come to power.
  • MARTON CSOKAS plays her husband, a member of a religious faction who wants to undermine the King's relationship with the Muslims and drive the latter group from the land.
  • LIAM NEESON plays the father Balian never knew, a knight who serves the King and will kill if that's what's necessary to preserve the peace.
  • DAVID THEWLIS plays his assistant, a knight-confessor who joins them on their quest and in their various battles.
  • BRENDAN GLEESON plays Guy's co-conspirator who shares the same ideology and sets into motion his and his people's doom.
  • JEREMY IRONS plays the King's military advisor who doesn't like Guy or Reynald's beliefs or actions.
  • EDWARD NORTON plays the young king who wants to keep peace in the region, but is dying from leprosy that's disfigured his body to the point that he wears metal face masks to hide his appearance.
  • GHASSAN MASSOUD plays the Muslim leader who agrees to the tenuous truce between his people and the Christians until parts of the latter purposefully break that, thus causing him to go to war.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a quick look at the content found in this action-filled drama that's been rated R. Violence consists of various sequences of epic battles where many people are killed or wounded by various medieval style means and related weaponry, occasionally with rather bloody and/or gory results. Other lethal and bloody violence includes various murders, executions and more. Some of that material, other moments of peril and some visuals (including a face disfigured with leprosy) might be unsettling or suspenseful to some viewers, while some of that fighting and other stunts might be enticing for some kids to imitate.

    A few colorful phrases are present, but there's no profanity. Some non-explicit, sexually related dialogue is uttered, while a woman has an affair with another man (and there's a brief and partially seen sex scene with kissing, heavy breathing and moving onto a bed). Various characters have varying degrees of bad attitudes, while a few drink and some must deal with deaths in their families.

    Should you still be concerned about the film's appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home, you may want to look more closely at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those concerned with bright flashes of light on the screen, there are some flashes of lightning during a bad storm at sea, while some torches flicker in a later scene and thus cause flashes of light.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, some camera shots zip around, thus potentially causing that reaction in some viewers.


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • In pain from being wounded, Godfrey orders that more wine be brought to him.
  • Balian drinks from a canteen of sorts (that may contain water or alcohol).
  • Tiberias and the Hospitaler have what might be alcohol.
  • Sibylla says she's off to where Jesus turned water into wine. She and Balian then drink what may be wine.
  • Sibylla drinks.
  • Guy drinks.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • Various men on two sides of a battle are bloody during it, including one seen with an arrow through his neck and blood splattering out when another is struck, and we briefly see a sword land down on top of a man's head, splitting the top of it open.
  • The Hospitaler tries to remove a broken arrow out of Godfrey's body, including with what resembles a pair of pliers that dig down into the flesh (with bloody results on the skin and clothing).
  • Balian slices an attacker's throat, with blood spraying onto another man and his horse. Balian then has blood on his sword blade.
  • Men attack others on horseback and we see two sword swings (but no impact) and then some of the victims' blood on the attackers, but it's all very brief.
  • We see blood spray and splatter out during a battle, with Balian having some blood on his face following it.
  • The King slaps Reynald and then repeatedly strikes him with a small rod (slightly bloodying his face). He then makes Reynald kiss his disfigured and bloody hand (and possibly infect him with his leprosy).
  • We see the King's dead and badly disfigured face (from leprosy).
  • A man strikes Balian (bloodying his face).
  • A person is beheaded (we don't see the impact as our view is briefly blocked), but we then see the bloody, severed head. We then see many dead and bloody bodies lying about.
  • Guy stabs a man up through the chin, with lots of blood coming out. The body is then dragged away and may be headless at that point as we also see a trail of blood on the floor.
  • We see many dead and bloody bodies following an unseen, large scale battle. A prisoner then has his throat slit, with lots of blood coming out and covering him (we hear gurgling sounds and that of another unseen cut). We later see his and another's man bloody heads on stakes in the ground (seen from behind).
  • Sibylla imagines seeing an image of her late brother's disfigured face.
  • We see bloody results of battle action and people being stabbed, sliced or hit with arrows.
  • We see a deep and bloody cut on a man's arm following a battle.
  • We see some bloody wounds in another battle, including a very bloody hand at a person's very bloody face.
  • We see many dead and bloody bodies on the ground following a battle.
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Those who battle each other have extreme cases of bad attitudes toward the other side.
  • The local priest takes a cross from a dead woman's body before her funeral. He later tells Balian that God does not love Balian and that the village does not want him.
  • Upon seeing that the local priest has his dead wife's cross, Balian takes a glowing hot sword from the fire and drives it through the man, murdering him.
  • Guy is demeaning to Balian on various occasions and won't eat with him (making a scene while leaving). He also plots to maneuver his way to the Throne, all while causing unrest in the Holy Land.
  • The Hospitaler states that religion is bad (due to fanatics using it), but that holiness is good (some viewers might not like that statement).
  • Sibylla cheats on her husband with Balian.
  • Reynald and others disobey the standing rules by attacking Muslims.
  • Guy's men say that there must be war as God wills it (some viewers might not like that statement).
  • Saladin's subordinate questions his decisions in front of others.
  • The King and Tiberias offer to have Guy killed so that Balian can wed Sibylla and thus become King, but Balian refuses, stating "a kingdom of conscience or nothing." Learning this, Sibylla tells him that one day he'll wish he'd done a little evil for a greater good.
  • Reynald tells Guy to kill Balian, and once the King is dead, three men are sent to carry out the order.
  • A priest wants to flee the walled city, stating that it's unfortunate for those who would be left behind, adding that it's God's will. Later, and realizing they're about to lose, says, "Convert to Islam, repent later."
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • Scenes listed under "Violence" (especially the big, epic battles) and "Blood/Gore" may be unsettling or suspenseful to younger viewers and/or those with low tolerance levels for such material.
  • We see a dead body covered in some sort of material, awaiting burial (the wind blows the head flap open, revealing a woman's face). We then hear that since she was a suicide, her head is to be cut off. We see a man then making the motion to do that, but we don't see the impact.
  • The Hospitaler tries to remove a broken arrow out of Godfrey's body, including with what resembles a pair of pliers that dig down into the flesh (with bloody results on the skin and clothing).
  • A seagoing vessel tips over during a bad storm at sea and breaks apart (resulting in many unseen deaths, although we later see many bodies that have washed up on the shore).
  • The King slaps Reynald and then repeatedly strikes him with a small rod (slightly bloodying his face). He then makes Reynald kiss his disfigured and bloody hand (and possibly infect him with his leprosy).
  • We see the King's dead and badly disfigured face (from leprosy).
  • Sibylla imagines seeing an image of her late brother's disfigured face.
  • We see several mass burials on both sides of a battle, with the Christians igniting the bodies on their side (seen from a distance).
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • Swords/Spears/Arrows/Axes/Other medieval weaponry such as catapults: Carried and/or used to threaten, wound or kill others and/or cause property damage. See "Violence" for details.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Bastards," "How can you be in Hell when you're in my heart?" and "And I'm the king of England."
  • All of the fighting and stunts may be enticing for some kids to imitate.
  • Godfrey slaps Balian, saying that it's to make him remember an oath he just took. Balian later does the same to another man for the same reason.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • A moderate amount of dramatic, action-oriented and suspenseful music plays in the film.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • None.
  • PROFANITY
  • None.
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • Godfrey tells Balian that he knew the latter's mother, against her objections (meaning sex). He states that he did not force her, but loved her in his fashion.
  • Godfrey says that he's sorry for all but one sin (meaning sleeping with Balian's mother and thus fathering a son).
  • Sibylla tells Balian, "I loved your father, and I shall love you."
  • Sibylla shows up and asks Balian, "Why do you think I'm here?" The two then passionately kiss and get onto a bed with him on top. We hear heavy breathing and briefly see movement and his bare back, but the scene quickly ends.
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • We hear that Balian's wife committed suicide following the death of their child and he's grieving over both matters at the beginning of the story.
  • Balian learns that Godfrey is his father that he's never known (and he initially isn't receptive to this news).
  • Balian must deal with his father's death.
  • Sibylla looks over her dead brother's body and is horrified by the appearance of his disfigured face.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • The Crusades.
  • The historical accuracy and/or artistic license taken with the real story.
  • The battle over the Middle East over the millennia.
  • We hear that Balian's wife committed suicide following the death of their child.
  • The saying "What man is a man who does not make the world better?"
  • Godfrey states that he once fought for two days with an arrow through his testicle.
  • The Hospitaler states that religion is bad (due to fanatics using it), but that holiness is good.
  • Leprosy.
  • Sibylla states that her marriage to Guy was arranged and completed when she was 15.
  • Guy's men say that there must be war as God wills it.
  • The King and Tiberias offer to have Guy killed so that Balian can wed Sibylla and thus become King, but Balian refuses, stating "a kingdom of conscience or nothing." Learning this, Sibylla tells him that one day he'll wish he'd done a little evil for a greater good.
  • Guy is a man ruled by his quest for power and glory.
  • Tiberias states he originally thought they were fighting for God, but that they're really doing so for wealth and land.
  • Fighting and killing for situations created long before the participating soldiers were born.
  • Balian tells Sibylla that her brother's Kingdom of Heaven was in the head and heart and not just the land he ruled.
  • VIOLENCE
  • Upon seeing that the local priest has his dead wife's cross, Balian takes a glowing hot sword from the fire and drives it through the man. He then pushes him into his blacksmith's fire, with the priest screaming and catching on fire. Balian's wooden blacksmith shop then catches on fire.
  • Godfrey and Balian do some brief sparring with swords, as the former tries to teach the latter the proper way to fight. Another man then spars with Balian following that.
  • Arrows fired from crossbows strike many of Godfrey's men and even one horse. The men, including the Hospitaler, Godfrey and Balian, then fight back, slicing and stabbing many of the intruders. During all of that, one man is hit in the neck with an arrow (with bloody results), as is another who continues to fight and kill the attackers before succumbing to more arrows in his chest. Many others are wounded or killed, some with bloody results (including a man being struck on the head that's split open).
  • Godfrey slaps Balian, saying that it's to make him remember an oath he just took.
  • A seagoing vessel tips over during a bad storm at sea and breaks apart (resulting in many unseen deaths, although we later see many bodies that have washed up on the shore).
  • A man charges at Balian on horseback, trying to strike him with sort of pole and then a sword, with Balian deflecting both with his sword. The two then engage in a swordfight on the ground, with Balian thumping the attacker who then comes at him with the pole again. Balian then slices the man's throat, with blood spraying onto another man and his horse. That man falls from his ride and Balian seems to drive his sword down into the man, but he's only done so next to him in the sand, purposefully sparing the man's life.
  • We briefly see several men pushed off a ledge and hanged in a public execution (for killing Muslims).
  • Men attack others on horseback and we see two sword swings (but no impact) and then some of the victims' blood on the attackers, but it's all very brief.
  • A small army battles a much larger one on horseback and then hand to hand, with men and horses falling to the ground, and various people stabbing and slicing others (with bloody results), including Balian who kills many before being knocked out. When he awakens, a man drives his sword down at him, but does so only in the sand next to Balian (as Balian earlier did to the same man).
  • The King slaps Reynald and then repeatedly strikes him with a small rod (slightly bloodying his face). He then makes Reynald kiss his disfigured and bloody hand (and possibly infect him with his leprosy).
  • Three men attack Balian and he repeatedly bashes one with a large rock, while avoiding a ball and chain from another that strikes a third. Balian then hits one of them with something and then appears to break one's neck on the ground. One then strikes Balian (bloodying his face) and then head-butts him with his helmet-covered head. Balian then stabs the man in the head with a small knife.
  • A person is beheaded (we don't see the impact as our view is briefly blocked), but we then see the bloody, severed head. We then see many dead and bloody bodies lying about. The Sultan's sister is also killed but we don't see the impact.
  • Guy stabs a man up through the chin, with lots of blood coming out. The body is then dragged away and may be headless at that point as we also see a trail of blood on the floor.
  • We see many dead and bloody bodies following an unseen, large scale battle. A prisoner then has his throat slit, with lots of blood coming out and covering him (we hear gurgling sounds and that of another unseen cut). We later see his and another's man bloody heads on stakes in the ground (seen from behind).
  • Balian slaps a newly knighted man to make him remember an oath he's just taken.
  • Saladin's forces attack the walled city, firing flaming boulders (or something similar) at it, causing damage and knocking many people off their feet (wounding or killing them, with some on fire). Balian's forces then return fire with the same, with more such explosions on the opposite side. The siege goes on for several days, including Balian's forces firing those boulders into attack towers that are being wheeled toward their walls. Various people are struck by arrows, while one man is on fire and struck by others. Tar or something similar is poured down on the attackers who are then set on fire. All sorts of hand to hand combat ensues, while others are struck by arrows, including one in the head. During this, Balian kills many, slicing and stabbing them with his sword (some with bloody results). Many burning men fall from an attack tower that's then pulled over and it lands on more (no direct impact seen from that one or other towers falling under similar circumstances). During all of this, Balian receives a bad cut on his arm.
  • There's more damage to the protective wall around the city, and it finally collapses, allowing the attackers inside where all sorts of hand to hand combat ensues (with swords, axes, spears, arrows and more).



  • Reviewed May 2, 2005 / Posted May 6, 2005

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