One Night with the King
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The story revolves around Haddassah (Tiffany Dupont), the lovely, wholesome Jewish daughter of Mordecai (the always wonderful John Rhys-Davies), a scribe for King Xerxes (Luke Goss). Early in the film, Xerxes "removes" his queen from power through the meddling of Prince Admantha (John Noble) and Haman (wickedly fun James Callis), both of which have their own delusions of grandeur in mind. Soon after, Xerxes goes on a quest to find a new queen to replace is "removed" one. Women throughout all the kingdom are taken to the king's palace and treated to all the wonders and niceties one would expect from the King of Persia. Eventually Xerxes falls for Haddassah (who's changed her name to the less Jewish-sounding Esther, for protection). While the two are falling for each other, Admantha and Haman are both putting their own plans for taking the kingdom into motion. One of those plans involves the destruction of all Jews in the kingdom. With both men attempting to convince Xerxes of their own plans, Esther has to stop the destruction of her people. If you're familiar with the Bible's version of "Esther," you already know how this tale ends.
Were liberties taken with the story? Yes, many in fact. Does it destroy the story of Esther? Absolutely not. This is a very good film with a wonderful cast. Unlike others, I failed to see the poor acting of the performers in this movie.Read more ›
So then I went home & read the entire book of Esther (it doesn't take very long -- it's a small book) & then went BACK to the theater & watched the movie AGAIN ...
At that point, I was also able to identify all the "poetic license" that was taken with the book of Esther, but I do NOT think that it detracted from the overall message & profound truth of the Biblical story -- rather, I think that it ENHANCED it.
And now, after watching "One Night With The King," the book of Esther is very REAL to me -- like it NEVER has been before.
NOTE: IF YOU FOUND THIS REVIEW HELPFUL, THEN PLEASE GO & GIVE MY "THE LAST MIMZY" REVIEW A VOTE, BECAUSE IT IS CURRENTLY BEING SLAMMED BY FOLKS WHO THINK IT IS WRONG TO WRITE A MOVIE REVIEW FROM A CHRISTIAN PERSPECTIVE. AND, IF YOU'RE REALLY FEELING GENEROUS, THEN PLEASE ALSO VOTE FOR MY "DADDY'S LITTLE GIRLS," "UNACCOMPANIED MINORS," "APOCALYPTO" & "WE ARE MARSHALL" REVIEWS. (THINK OF IT AS A "RANDOM ACT OF KINDNESS" ;) THANK YOU! & LOTS OF HUGS & BLESSINGS TO ALL MY BROTHERS & SISTERS IN CHRIST <><
First of all, this film is a cut above the typical 'Christian' attempt at Hollywood quality. The scenery of ancient Persia looks more Indian than Persian, but the computer effects are quite acceptable and remind one (remotely) of the Lord of the Rings genre. (Made no less obvious by the casting of two of the stars from those films.)
Having said that, the film is not up to the quality of 'Joseph', Moses', or other such movies done on a Hollywood budget. The sound quality is not top-notch, and many lines are inaudible. The acting is better than expected, including a worthy effort by Tiffany Dupont as Esther. The King Xerxes character seemed somewhat strained and lacking at times, and Peter O'Toole makes only a brief cameo.
The weakest aspect of the film is the anachronistic and too often silly reliance on the star of David theme which reduced the historical accuracy (and believability) of the movie. Also disappointing was the deflating conclusion of a story which gleans much of its suspense from the hanging of Haman. This movie deserved a much better ending.
As a historian, I enjoyed the references to Greek democracy, Gilgamesh of Sumer, and the imminent downfall of King Xerxes at the hands of the Greeks. As a Christian, I appreciated what the directors attempted to do--make a modern, interesting retelling of the Esther story. Understanding the limitations mentioned, and accepting the liberties taken with adding 'flesh' to the bones of the story, most Christians will be at least mildly pleased with this effort.
My main complaint is that Esther's true character doesn't get a look in here. Tiffany Dupont is woefully miscast. A nasally American voice and a modern sensibility overwrite the gravity of her situation and Esther's unusual integrity and presence of mind. I couldn't help feeling like I was watching an incarnation of Disney's Princess Yasmin. She giggled like a schoolgirl throughout, and when brought to the harem along with all of half a dozen other beautiful virgins (seriously? That was all they could find? In all the provinces of the realm? It was a pretty big realm!) she spent a lot of time twirling under invisible showers of rose petals and not a lot of time contemplating her fate, which should have been pretty sobering. I do not think these are the qualities that impressed Hegai the King's eunuch, or led her to "win the favour of everyone who saw her". In short, she wasn't queen-like. What a waste of an opportunity to portray a dignified Jewish woman.
In the film, she meets Xerxes weeks before their official first meeting. It's love at first sight, obviously. He asks her to read to him, and she diverts from the text to tell a story about Jacob and Rachael, a story which probably would have been a dead give away to anyone remotely acquainted with Jewish history - not a smart move considering she's concealing her cultural identity. But Xerxes finds it charming and falls in love with her.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have watched this several times. It is new and fresh everytime I see it. Awesome portrayal of our Lord Jesus Christ through Esther - willing to give her life to save her people... Read morePublished 5 days ago by Nancy Ott
Love love this book of Esther in the Bible. This movie does it mostly justice, except when Haman grabbed Esther in the movie, but in the Bible he fell upon the bed where Esther... Read morePublished 6 days ago by Catlady03
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If you enjoyed the movie, I beg you to get the book "Hadessa, One night with the King". I have read it three times in the past two years. The book is much better than the movie, although I did enjoy the show. The book takes you there...its wonderful and a must read.
Apr 2, 2007 by Cherish T. Menard | See all 6 posts
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