Over the thousands of years that the epic story the Iliad has survived, there has no doubt been some form of alteration to Homer's original. Last May, Wolfgang Petersen directed a movie based on the Iliad. This movie, Troy, has proven to be a very loose adaptation of Homer's original, as are almost all stories that are made into movies, unfortunately. With its timeless storyline, amazing scenery, gorgeous actors/actresses and most of all, its reported two hundred million dollar budget, it is easy to see why Troy was hyped up to be a box office hit. However, the film critics were harsh on this movie, as they had every right to be, and it ended up being a total flop. Compared to Homer's Iliad, Troy is rather disappointing. But, to be fair, one must keep in mind the limitations of a movie compared to those of a book, and the fact that the title is Troy, not the Iliad. It really is not as bad as expected. Troy is Homer's Iliad gone to Hollywood. There probably are just as many similarities as differences from the original. The three major upsetting differences in Troy compared to the Iliad are the absence of the Gods, the weak character and plot development, and the addition, exclusion, and reversal of key points. First and most disappointing, was the absence of the Gods in the movie Troy. Divine intervention was a major variable in Homer's Iliad. The Gods affected every aspect of this poem. While the Gods were mentioned and the viewers were made well aware that the characters believe in the Gods, the only God that was physically seen was Thetis, Goddess of the Sea and Achilles' mother. One memorable quote from the movie was in a conversation between Achilles and Briseis. Briseis states, "All the Gods are to be feared and respected" (Troy 2004). Achilles answers by saying: Can I tell you a secret, something they don't teach you in your temple? The Gods envy us. They envy us because we're mortal, because any moment...
Cited: Bloom, Harold, ed. Homer 's Iliad, Bloom 's Notes. Broomall, PA: Chelsea House, 1996
Nardo, Don, ed. Readings on Homer. San Diego, CA: Green Haven, 1998
Troy. Dir. Wolfgang Petersen. Perf. Brad Pitt, Eric Bana, Orlando Bloom. Warner
Brothers Pictures, 2004
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