Beowulf (2007 movie)

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Beowulf is a 2007 American-British 3D motion-capture fantasy movie. Based off the epic poem, it stars Ray Winstone, Anthony Hopkins, Robin Wright, Brendan Gleeson, Crispin Glover, Angelina Jolie, John Malkovich and Alison Lohman. It was directed by Robert Zemeckis and released on November 16 2007, to financial success and positive critical reviews.

Plot[change | change source]

In the early Middle Ages, the court of King Hrothgar of Denmark (Anthony Hopkins), is plagued by the monster Grendel (Crispin Glover), who attacks the king's people when they celebrate. Hearing of the king's plight, the warrior Beowulf (Ray Winstone), travels to the kingdom with a band of his fellow Geatish warriors, including his friend Wiglaf (Brendan Gleeson), to slay the beast. When they arrive, Beowulf falls in love with the king's wife Queen Wealthow (Robin Wright), who reciprocates his affections.

The warriors celebrate in the king's mead hall Heorot in an attempt to lure Grendel out. When the monster attacks, Beowulf fights him nude and unarmed (it is revealed that he is invulnerable to man-made weapons). In the fight, Beowulf discovers Grendel has hypersensitive hearing, which is why he attacks Hrothgar's celebrations (the noise from the mead hall is painful to him). After his left eardrum is ruptured, Grendel shrinks in size and, while trying to escape, Beowulf restrains him and uses the door of the hall to sever the monster's arm. To thank him for defeating the monster, Hrothgar gives Beowulf his golden drinking horn, which commemorates his victory over the dragon Fafnir.

Grendel retreats to his cave and with his final breaths, he tells his mother (Angelina Jolie), what has happened to to him and she swears revenge. She travels to Heorot and butchers Beowulf's soldiers while they sleep. Hrothgar informs Beowulf and Wiglaf, who were not sleeping in the hall when the attack took place, that this was the work of Grendel's mother; she is the last surviving member of the Water Demons, long thought to have left the land forever. The two travel to Grendel's cave to slay her. When Beowulf encounters her, she takes on the form of a beautiful young woman. She promises to make him the greatest king who has ever lived, in exchange for the drinking horn and a son who will replace Grendel.

Beowulf agrees to the deal and returns to Heorot, claiming that she has been slain by him. Hrothgar, however, realizes the truth and indirectly tells Beowulf that many years before, he was seduced by Grendel's mother, and Grendel was the product of their affair. Beowulf is then crowned King of the Danes, much to the dismay of Unferth (John Malkovich), Hrothgar's adviser. The king kills himself by jumping off the castle and on to the beach. His body is then washed away by the sea.

The years go by, and Beowulf and Wealthow are married. They have grown apart over the years and are husband and wife in name alone. Beowulf has taken a lover called Ursula (Alison Lohman), but is sterile after his affair with Grendel's mother. One day, Unferth's slave Cain finds the golden drinking horn in Grendel's lair and brings it back to the kingdom. That night, a dragon decimates a nearby town, but Unferth is spared to deliver a message to Beowulf; the beast is his illegitimate son with Grendel's mother. Removing the drinking horn has voided their agreement and Grendel's mother has sent the dragon to destroy his father's kingdom.