Arizona Republic


July 3, 2003


Sunday Sections
- A&E
- CareerBuilder
- Travel & Explore
- Viewpoints


Weekly Features
- Food & Drink
- House & Home
- Movie Preview
- Wheels
- Yes


Communities
- Ahwatukee
- Chandler
- Gilbert
- Mesa
- Scottsdale
- Tempe
- North / Central
  Phoenix

- Northeast
  Phoenix

- South Phoenix
- Glendale /
  Peoria

- Southwest
  Valley

- Sun Cities /
  Surprise



7-Day Archive
- Sunday
- Monday
- Tuesday
- Wednesday
- Thursday
- Friday
- Saturday


Search the Site
Go
• Advanced search, tips



Great scenery and battles can't save heartless 'Sinbad'

advertisement

Scott Craven
The Arizona Republic
Jul. 2, 2003 12:00 AM

Over the years, Sinbad has sailed the high seas, slaying monsters and escaping perilous situations. But now he needs to track down the people who stole his heart.

Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas has some swash, a little buckling, but very little soul. The Sinbad created by DreamWorks is flat and lifeless compared with the stunning visuals of the computer-animated backgrounds he moves against.

Brad Pitt voices the title character, and you can almost imagine the star lounging on a recliner, beer in hand, watching the latest Friends episode while delivering his lines. The inflections are all the same, whether Sinbad is delivering a wisecrack or his crew from danger.

The hand-drawn animation of the characters won't make anyone forget Disney (or Fox, for that matter). Faces lack detail save for their oversize eyes, where all the emotion takes place. Mouths seem slightly out of synch with the dialogue, and characters move awkwardly, lacking the flow that audiences are accustomed to seeing in big-budget animated features.

The care and effort that went into the computer-designed settings is evident from the first scene, as Eris (Michelle Pfeiffer), the goddess of chaos, looks down upon our hero, who is attempting to steal the Book of Peace, a priceless artifact that keeps safe the 12 Cities. (This being ancient times, no one has the ability to illegally download the book and spread its goodness everywhere.)

Eris sends a sea monster to put the chaos into motion, a well-choreographed 3-D battle that gives the movie promise. But the film melts back into its 2-D self each time Sinbad sheaths his swords and opens his mouth.

The monster keeps Sinbad from his prize, but Eris offers him an even better deal if he steals the book for her, thus beginning her dark reign. That's fine for Sinbad, who was contemplating early retirement anyway.

Eris, however, is hardly true to her word, framing Sinbad and turning everyone against him, save his old friend Proteus (Joseph Fiennes), who happens to be a prince and in a position to let Sinbad prove his worth. Thus the legend begins. Finally.

There is the obligatory romance with Marina (Catherine Zeta-Jones), which unfolds in the kind of Hepburn-Tracy predictability that makes even Eris yearn for the fast-forward button, at one point muttering, "OK, enough talk." You go, goddess.

The computerized visuals are a treat, particularly when Sinbad arrives in Eris' realm amid an ocean of sand, which rolls and recedes to reveal many treasures beneath. Unfortunately, the computer couldn't write the dialogue or voice the characters.

Children 5 and older will enjoy the action and the bloodless battle scenes (no animated human is killed or seriously injured), though the younger ones may fidget as Sinbad and Marina get all touchy-feely.

Its not that the film was particularly Sinbad, but it could have been much Sin-better.



Reach the reporter at

(602) 444-8773.




• Parental high anxiety
• For spa therapist, toes are a window to the sole, er, soul
• New magazine touts Vegas' glitz, glamour
• From 'Idol' to 'Kelly' to courtroom
• 'CBS News' continues ratings slide
• Self-adhesive bra solves strapless woes
• Frankly, Yanks can't cut mustard on Fourth

More on azcentral.com
Get a new friend
Browse hundreds of dogs, cats and other animals up for adoption at shelters Valleywide, plus access handy resources for Arizona pet owners.

Food & home
Find home decorating ideas, gardening guides, do-it-yourself help and lots more in food & home.

Find your style
Pay a visit to Yes, your guide to fashion, beauty and stylish Valley living.

Health & fitness
Access the latest news on health and fitness, plus get information on common medical conditions.

Crafty ideas
Handy arts and crafts tips that create fun projects for the whole family.

TV listings
Find out what's on TV and set up a personalized program schedule.

Horoscopes
Choose your sign from the list below to access today's horoscope.

azcentral.com - NewsSportsMoneyEntertainmentStyleTravelHealthFood & HomeShop
12 News - NewsWeatherWhat's on 12About 1212 News Bios12 News TodayJobs at KPNX

autos
business
CareerBuilder
personals
real estate
rentals
services
stuff



weather
obituaries
lottery
site map
help
contact us
about us
republic store