Friday, July 21, 2017

Red Eagle: The Movie (2011) - Foreign Film Friday

Number Rolled: 3
Movie Name/Year: Red Eagle: The Movie (2011)
Tagline: None
Genre: Action, Adventure, History
Length: 116 minutes
Rating: NR
Production Companies: Globomedia, Instituto de la Cinematografia y de las Artes Audiovisuales (ICAA), Television Espanola (TVE), Versatil Cinema
Producer: Santiago De la Rica, Kiko Vega, Arantxa Ecija, Daniel Ecija
Director: Jose Ramon Ayerra
Writer: Guillermo Cisneros, Pilar Nadal, Juan Maria Ruiz Cordoba
Actors: David Janer, Javier Gutierrez, Francis Lorenzo, Inma Cuesta, Miryam Gallego, Roberto Alamo, Pepa Aniorte, Santiago Molero, Xabier Elorriaga, Jose Angel Egido, Guillermo Campra, Patrick Criado, Martina Klein, Mariano Pena, Antonio Molero, Stany Coppet, William Miller, Xavier Lafitte, Joan Crosas, Jean Dominikowski, Joan Carles Suau, Frank Crudele, Inma Sancho, Simon Cohen, Miko Jarry
Stunt Doubles: Diego Alvarez, Ramon Alvarez

Blurb from Netflix: Stepping into the persona of his alter ego, Gonzalo de Montalvo tangles with the corrupt Spanish government to avenge an attack on his son.

Selina’s Point of View:
I was thrilled with this week’s pick. A Spanish fantasy sounded pretty golden to me.

This was definitely an interesting film. It was serious, but it had some campy moments and characters that were parodies of their archetypes. The mix of the two was strange to see, but not in a bad way.

To be honest, the feel of the movie reminded me a lot of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991). My mom used to love that movie and watched it over and over again throughout my childhood, and I watched with her. Keep in mind, the plot is absolutely different, it’s just the basic feel that reminded me of the older movie.

There was a lot packed into this film. There was a superhero aspect to it, conspiracy, politics, romance, decent fight choreography… in fact, the only thing it didn’t have that I thought it would was some sort of mysticism. I guess that makes it more of a period piece, but it still had that warrior-heavy fantasy feel so I’m sticking with that label.

It felt like the beginning of something and, quite frankly, if they came out with an entire series of these films I’d watch them. I’d watch every single one of them.

There was definitely enough of an opening at the end to do something more with it.

Upon further research, Wikipedia says that Red Eagle is a television show that ran from 2009 to 2016. I found the show on IMDb under the Spanish title Aguila Roja. I’m guessing that means the film was just something extra that came out during the show’s running. All the actors seem the same and it’s the same universe, so I think both the show and the movie are canon for the plot.

I’m going to be hunting the show down and giving it a watch-through.

Cat’s Point of View:
This Foreign Film Friday selection was a wonderful treat. Sci-fi and fantasy are my true favorite genres and this movie was squarely in the fantasy action range with historical fiction flair.

I have no idea if the Red Eagle is an actual figure of Spanish folklore, but the character resonates nearly on the level of Robin Hood. I did say nearly, though. From my perspective, albeit which could be somewhat limited, the Hood is more ingrained into the global consciousness and this is my first introduction to the eagle of crimson.

While the film did feel a bit like it picked up in the middle of something, and there was a sense of layers just out of reach of understanding – it grabbed my attention phenomenally and I was glued to the screen so that the nearly two hours of the movie just flew by.

I absolutely adored the dynamic between Gonzalo and Satur, played by David Janer (Mar de Fons, Paco's Men, The Blind Sunflowers) and Javier Gutiérrez (A Night in Old Mexico, The Olive Tree, Assassin's Creed) respectively. Their banter and hero/sidekick roles are an integral part of what makes this whole thing work.

My only beef wasn’t even with the film, itself, but with the stupid Netflix blurb. Don’t read it. This is yet another case where the summary gives a patently false impression of the movie’s plot and gives potential spoilers at the same time. I mean seriously, Netflix. You need to sack the llama responsible for writing those and hire another llama with more sense.

All said, I adored this movie and want more. I would gladly recommend it as something for the whole family to enjoy. (There are a couple spots you might cover the eyes of the young due to some nudity, but it’s not gratuitous and quite brief.)

Speech Available: Spanish
Subtitles Available: English, Spanish

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – None
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 32%
Metascore - None
Metacritic User Score – None
IMDB Score – 4.9/10

Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating4.5/5
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating4.5/5

P.S.  Some tiny scenes during the credits.

Movie Trailer:

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