The research paper “The movie 13th Warrior” seeks to evaluate the movie “13th Warrior”, which is based on the epic poem Beowulf, however, the representation of major themes, such as friendship, fame, courage, religion and evilness are quiet different. …
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There are also references to the Cain killing Abel “this unhappy being had long lived in the land of monsters since the Creator cast them out as kindred of Cain. For that killing of Abel the eternal Lord took vengeance.”( Heaney, 165). Beowulf has taken 12 men to his last fight, just like Jesus had twelve disciples at the table during the Last Supper. Probably, the author was trying to put Beowulf on the line with Jesus. Beowulf went to kill the dragon in order to stop killings on innocent, just like Jesus has sacrificed himself to give salvation to the whole human kind. The same elements of Christianity can be traced in the movie “13th Warrior”, however, with some differences. For example, the movie starts with Arab meeting with his people to go on a quest. This Arab is the narrator of the story, and, therefore, he is Muslim, not Christian. However, all of those Christianity elements mentioned above (twelve people, reference to one God not many) still remain. Such difference in representing religion is a bit confusing, because it is believed that Muslim religion belongs to the Pagan. The Vikings (members of the Arab’s bang) showed in the movie were the part of the culture according to which there are numerous Gods and they reside on Mount Olympus. The similarity between Arab and Beowulf is that both of them believe in one God. From the other side, mentioning of the trolls, giants fighting ogres and elves which are plenty in the poem, are not part of the Christianity (Beowulf, 164).. Moreover, the mentioning to the idols is also part of the Paganism. These Pagan symbols and creatures are also present in the movie. Therefore, the depiction of Pagan religion in the poem and in the movie is the same.
Another theme covered in the poem is the traditional funeral of that time. Both the movie and poem start with the funeral of the king which is described very vividly. As it is written in Beowulf, the warrior and king are set a float with all the possessions and then the raft is set on fire. “13th Warrior” presents this scene exactly the same. Afterwards the great feast comes to celebrate the death of the old ruler and the life of the new ruler. It is a very interesting historical tradition to make the celebration of the king’s death and life of new king at one day. It seems that joy and sorrow stand at one line.
Further, the personality of Beowulf is depicted differently in the poem compared to the movie. For example, Beowulf has led his warriors in the search for glory (not because of his desire to be good) and decided to help the town only because this act will add up fame in his life. In the movie, it is presented differently: the warriors traveled to the village in order to relieve distress and for this reason they have offered their assistance. However, the courage of these warriors is equally appraised in the movie and in the poem: not a single person went to sleep
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