A Night in Persia

Posted on June 9, 2010

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The line in front of Regal Cinema at Waterford Lakes Plaza moved fast and we search our smartphone to read reviews. We sought council on what film to watch. The immediate reaction to the blazing red list on the marquee, “Shrek seems to be the only kid friendly film.”  But our patience paid off and we found a better candidate for the night. The people behind us seemed confused as to why this family of five was letting everyone pass them in the line but we wanted to be sure.

Our decision was swift like our quickly paced line, we turned to finally purchase tickets for Walt Disney‘s Prince of Persia, starring Jake Gylenhaal. An 8:10 Showing, hmm? Our little ones would probably fall asleep. So we made the best of our early arrival. The extra time let us hang out at some of the displays. We got some snapshots for the next Narnia film.

Excited yet about the return to Narnia? We are!

Finally we armed ourselves with well deserved Dibs ice cream and set into a night in Persia.

The story was unfamiliar to me since I only played the video game a few times. The last time I played Prince of Persia: the Forgotten Sands, my little hero, Matthew was with me and we could not forget our thrill of running along walls and taking vicious leaps from towers and hanging vines. Jenny, Jemileen and Joshua, our loyal audience, when we endeavored this popular video game- even they tried at the great Persian adventure.

Tonight the family takes a bigger leap together. It’s been a while since we saved for an epic adventure, we all know we have to save to even do that now huh? But an adventure we had. As the lights dimmed my daughter’ eyes widen and the water she sipped almost jumped out of her mouth! It took her a whole hour and half to fall asleep. The character of Tamina, the princess, guardian of the sacred dagger kept her interest for longer than we expected…she was proud of her fellow warrior princess…HAYAH!

When the film began I remembered my own connection to this film and not so much the review from variety.com but more my kid days of playing Prince of Persia on the DOS/ IBM computer my mom had back in our one room studio apartment.  That memory slowly faded into the now gigantic screen before me. The image of a rising sun behind the silhouette of a sand dune in the desert drowned out the highly critical approach of Variety and just like my kids, I let go, I imagined being that little orphan boy in the square leaping from building to building impressing the mighty Persian king and earning a seat next to him as a Persian prince.

My wife no doubt enjoyed the romantic comedy, as did I. She cringed a bit at the violent sequences but she agrees that the romance was classy and patient. The element of a love that knows how to wait and focus on the more important matters at hand truly impressed us. Plus, I am sure she enjoyed Jake Gylenhaal even though she might not come right out and say it. I certainly enjoyed Gemma Arterton as Tamina…her performance I mean…and she…never mind.

It’s alright, I can deal with the unsaid, Jake, as usual performs to his highest ability and earns my respect. I think the only other epic he’s been in was “The Day After tomorrow” and even though I haven’t seen that yet, I can trust Gylenhaal does his work and brings all his enthusiasm and dedication to a role. That’s the approach I like to take with anything brought to me, so when I see actors do the same I cannot help but admire and applaud. Great Job Jake!

Still, I used to dream of playing Dastan when I was a kid. Of going on great adventures and seeing the world. When I played the video game with my son not too long ago I day dreamed with doing stunts and drinking water on a set somewhere in the desert making some amazing tale come to life. But I am nowhere near the professional status that Jake Gylenhaal has worked so hard for. So while I can admire his work I do carry a bit of jealousy that he was made for it and I was not. But I’m not bitter. Really…

I quickly let that go though so that I could fully enjoy this “little journey” with my boys sitting by my side. Who by the way did not fall asleep at all! The fighting, the action, the suspense, the tale of brothers in a struggle against conspiracy kept them awake. Joshua was a bit spooked with the jumping slithering snakes, and Matthew cringed at the sight of the corpses, dead at the hands of the Hassansins.

In short we loved it and loved watching it together. A film about brotherhood, family, honesty, responsibility and courage will consistently brings us to stadium seats to munch on Dibs and dream of being able to turn back the hands of time. So go watch it and come back and tell me what you think…enjoy!

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Posted in: Film, Life