11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on May 13, 2010
This film is quite a breath of fresh air in comparison to the higher budget scifi films out there; where the writer's pen is often ever visible. In this film, you're thrown into a time nowhere near as safe or logical as ours and yet the film is catching enough in its realism to compensate for the lack of Hollywood gloss.
In addition, this is a family appropriate film with a wonderfully realistic and mature nature well blended into it. The reality it applies allows parents to watch it without wanting to enact some form of self-strangulation and yet allows children to understanding the world has had and still does contain more serious things, without being terrifying.
This film is also entertaining without superhuman qualities used as plot crutches, which is amazing, to say the least. Additionally, there is some teen romance, a realistic amount of death/blood considering this kid is hurled into the year 1212, and some violence. However, all of it is met with real emotion and not flamboyance or over emphasis. I appreciate that as the movie takes care of itself while not taking on too many unrealistic tasks. This kid doesn't turn into a sword master and is shown in real weakness and plausible strengths in just the right way to make it a beautiful and entertaining film. In the movie world, that's no small feat.
In addition, it encompasses many sets of morals and values that all of us - young and old - sometimes need to revisit - Like not following blindly but also not forgetting that sometimes we need to have faith in something and/or someone. And while this movie moves on the Christian themes of God, even those who are not amongst that logic or ilk can appreciate it. Why? Well, the general sense of applying ourselves, our goodwill, and love (in this case on the part of the main character, Dolf) are things to keep in mind when we come across our own life's hurdles. It's not earthshattering but it's played off so well it's masterful and fun.
So go watch it already!!!
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on September 26, 2008
"About the new U.S. Release Version:
The film is currently 30 minutes shorter than the previous Dutch version and the story has been streamlined and sharpened bringing the characters and the conflict into greater relief. This new version has a new ending, some new scoring and a couple of new original songs written for the film."
Let me tell you, they really chopped up that ending.
Imagine taking 30 minutes worth of awesome storyline wrap up and squeezing it into 2 minutes. All that information and character wrap up and explanations for why these new characters are in the story and why they are doing what they are doing....gone. Replaced by some haphazard BS. Almost like it had been written by someone completely new who'd never written more than a junior high story for mediated english class.
Aside from the ending, the rest of the story line is totally awesome. Great character development, actions of the characters made sense and fit with the story line and character motivations. Had me, my bf, and my daughter laughing, in tears, tense, and relief. Led up to the climax smoothly, had us wondering if the main character was going to succeed, etc....and then fell flat, worse than flat, with the chopped up ending that made no sense and didn't fit in.
The dutch version seems to have gotten awards, but I don't see how the USA version can even be considered for one with that ending.
I would have given the movie 5 stars, except for that ending (can you tell I hated it??). I give it 2 stars because the movie was actually awesome, but in the end..the USA ending ruined it all.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2008
Right at the outset it needs to be said that there are three versions of this movie. The Netherlands [Kruistocht in spijkerbroek] version is 138 minutes long; the German version is 125 minutes, and the North American is stripped down to 100 minutes.
That said, this is a wonderful movie for traditional values, especially religious, families. In a sense, it is a clever comparison between the lack of Christian faith in the modern boy, Dolf, with the simple, trusting faith of the bulk of the people on the Children's Crusade. I think the movie was quite fair in its treatment of both sides. Of course, they had to show the monk-leader to be anything but Christian, which is a negative. But, he clearly is the exception, not the rule, among the believers. In one of the climactic scenes the behavior of the monk and Dolf was compared, in that the monk talked a good talk, but it was Dolf who acted over and over again to help the people. We don't know Dolf's inner spiritual life, but he clearly did to 'the least of these' in the way that Jesus spoke of in the Gospels.
Of course, there is lots of great adventure that will keep the whole family glued to the screen. There is quite a bit of violence, but nothing particularly gory. Also, this was a very hard time in which to live, so they are faced with illness and even the death of some of the children. One of Dolf's most faithful admirers dies when he is kidnapped. Some of the children are sold into slavery for passage through a certain area, but Dolf springs into action and leads a group to rescue the kids.
If you need one movie to entertain the whole family, I think this would be a great choice. Parents may need to explain things to the younger children, but I am sure that even to a kindergartner will be able to tell who is good and who is not. Finally, there is virtually no questionable language. There is a bit from the modern people, but the overwhelming majority of the film takes place with the simple Christian children trying to serve God in the best way they could.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on September 28, 2010
A travel through time story with a modern twist, Crusade: A March Through Time is a good showing for actor Joe Flynn, also known as Johnny Flynn, a folk singer. He has said that his acting finances his singing but perhaps we'll see more of both in the future. This is an English speaking remake of a Dutch film, Crusade in Jeans.
Flynn plays Dolph Vega, son of a scientist (Emily Watson), who has invented a time machine in Rotterdam. Dolph spends too much time at her lab, enough time to know how to impersonate his mother and work the machine. On the day in question, Dolph loses a football match in Germany, foiling The Netherlands' chances in the under 17 age group for the next 4 years. He considers the loss to be his fault and resolves to go back 12 hours and do the match over, in Germany. Security tries to stop Dolph, leading to his mother's password being entered into the system as the date of travel. He ends up in the 13th century and joins the Children's Crusade led by Nicholas, a shepherd boy. Dolph falls in with a small group of the crusaders, people he becomes close to, especially Jenne (Stephanie Leonidas). He finds himself trying to help care for thousands of children who are on a crusade to the Holy Land. A priest (Michael Culkin) seems to actually hold the power behind the crusade, not Nicholas, and his actions seem suspicious. Dolph's mother is trying to help him get home but the machine has become damaged during a lightning storm and her superiors put her on leave because of Dolph's actions. There are unexpected friends along the way as well as enemies.
All in all, a fun science fiction romance with a bit of sword fighting and adventure.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 23, 2010
Nothing in this movie is especially plausible. Although the production values (cost) are high, there are hundreds of episodes, in dozens of science fiction TV shows that are far more worth watching.
A soccer kid ... amazingly ... has complete access to what would be one of the most secret installations in the world. He decides to "fix" a mistake he made in a critical international match. That's cheating? Well, this movie isn't bothered by minor philosophical issues like that!
Going back in time to the wrong place in the woods randomly, he is beset by bandits, who try to kill him. That at least is believable. However, he's saved in a nick of time by a beautiful girl who happens to be just his own age. What a coincidence! You can see where this is going. This movie is banal and obvious sci-fi tripe. Worth two stars because they spent a considerable amount on filming, and it's pretty.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2013
I enjoyed the adventure this film portrayed! It had an interesting story line which wrapped up nicely at the end. I am not too keen on this being shown to younger audiences who might have a hard time understanding the complexities of some of the characters.
on July 7, 2011
I heartily agree with the reviewer who stated that this movie is strong even though it has no Hollywood style gloss. Thank God for that!
This film has more of soul than Hollywood films such as Timeline which falls under the same genre. The latter relies on action to keep the audiences interest, A March through time is far more of a human drama, which explores the motivations of well developed characters. We see Dolf (Rudolf) the male lead grow from the complaining, indulged modern Kid, to a charismatic and compassionate leader, whom the other children come to love and respect.
Whereas Timeline is mostly shallow, and devoid of anything but a superficial exploration of moral and scientific themes, these are strongly present in A March Through Time. The audience is presented with the themes of friendship, loyalty, love and sacrifice, as well as a thought provoking exploration of the uses and abuses of religion.
This is to some characters a convinient justification for thier own selfish ends, and a means of controlling people, whilst to others thier faith forms a genuine basis for thier life and behaviour, as well as a strong moral axis.
There is also mention of the theoretical physical effects of the alterations in time, as well as the problems and challenges of overcoming this. This gives the film something of a pseudo- scientific basis that is lacking in others like it.
Many such time travel movies, especially those set in the ancient of medieval times adopt a very arrogant and patronising view of past eras and the people who lived in them. With modern characters harping on about how much cleverer they are, and how much more knowledge they have than people from the past, or else simply presenting medieval people as superstitious idiots.
This movie does this less often than most, and Dolf comes to understand and respect the people around him, and adapt to thier 'strange' ways, without always assuming he is better than them.
on January 18, 2010
While this movie is clearly not an epic, and does not appear to have been made on a large budget, it is good, fresh fun.
It appears to be rated PG mainly for the adventure violence and peril - there is only one instance of a mild swear word that I noticed. There is an obvious teen romance, but only one mild kiss results.
The acting is all good, with some higher areas of positive greatness (and lower areas of "OKness" in some lesser characters).
The clashes between Dolf's modern knowledge and technology and the superstitions of the medieval people is interesting and entertaining.
Dolf demonstrates loyalty, ingenuity, and bravery throughout the film, as do several other characters.
My only real problem with the movie is that the two leaders of the Crusade were portrayed in a decidedly negative light. The older priest was shown as a self-centered, conniving man bent on making his fortune by selling the children into slavery. Nicholas, the young instigator of the whole Crusade, is fanatical, slightly foolish, and blind to the suffering and dangers his followers are going through (until Dolf points it out). I must admit that I do not know how true this is to the real characters, but it seems a little bit overdone.
However, the faith and fortitude of the common children is very well shown.
Oh, and I did find myself wishing for that extra half hour not available on the American DVDs! The ending did seem a bit precipitate as it was.
Though this is definitely not the most historically correct movie I've ever seen, it did spark conversations with my younger, less historically inclined siblings about the real facts of the Children's Crusade. It's unusual for anything to arouse the slightest curiousity in them about history, so I was quite pleased. A nice bonus!
on November 29, 2013
I discovered this treasure at the library and just had to get it. It has all of the time travel, disobedient teen-aged angst and history that you could possibly want. I was not familiar with the story of the Children's Crusade and have no idea how faithful this movie is to the actual story, but the staging was wonderful and gives you a sense of the places and time period. The young actors give very strong performances, emotional without being sanguine and the story line itself will please even the most die hearted Whovian! I'd say it's appropriate for ages 10 and up. One note: there are no closed captions, so it's sometimes difficult to follow some of the dialogue. If you're not getting old and losing your hearing like me, it will be just fine.
on April 23, 2013
I did not have great expectations about this movie. I was interested in the subject of time travel and medieval Europe. The movie took creative license on the historical facts mixing two crusades. That did not take away from the story line. I was pleased with the movie. the ending could have been more creative at the same time who does not like a happy happy ending.
A worthwhile addition to your movie collection if you are interested in time travel.