Master and Commander: Far Side of the World
I'm certain that anyone who's been to the movies a reasonable number of times over the last few years will have the same reaction I did after watching about five minutes of "Master and Commander." That reaction can be summed up succinctly with the following quotation: "Whoa! Pippin is steering the boat!"
Indeed, Billy Boyd plays Barrett Bonden, the guy who steers the ship, raising a profound cinematic conundrum: Should actors from "The Lord of the Rings" be allowed in other films? I say no. I saw Pippin steering the ship and wondered aloud: "Where's Frodo?" Boyd was a distraction that never went away and I just figured he was mad at Orlando Bloom for starring in "Pirates of the Caribbean."
Apparently somebody forgot to tell director Peter Weir he was making an action movie, because the long, waterlogged mess I watched seemed to indicate Weir had spent too much time at the Shackleton exhibit at his local museum. Ostensibly, Capt. Aubrey (Russell Crowe) is trying to deal with the threat of a more powerful French ship. In practice, he and Dr. Maturin (Paul Bettany) debate the finer points of male psychology and perform violin/cello duets.
Frankly, I'm not sure what the title refers to. Is Aubrey the master or the commander? Which one is better? And why do the British say "leftenant" instead of "lieutenant"? Does it have something to do with driving on the wrong side of the road? Thanks to this film, I'll be picking up Nora Roberts's novels before anything by Patrick O'Brian.
To spread the word about this Master and Commander: Far Side of the World review on Twitter.To get instant updates of Mr. Cranky reviews, subscribe to our RSS feed.