Monday, August 29, 2011

Movie Moments: The Last Legion (2007)


Colin Firth stars in this sword and sandal pic that, as with the previously posted King Arthur, weaves together various facts and legends - the collapse of the Roman Empire in Britain, the loss of the Roman 9th Legion, King Arthur, Merlin, Excalibur – to present yet another alternative explanation of the Arthurian legend.  In some ways it is similar to King Arthur in its alternative scenario.

Oadacer, head of the Goths, sacks Rome.  Romulus (played by the kid in Love Actually), the child who has inherited the mantle of ruler of Rome, survives and is protected by Aurelias (Colin Firth) and an adviser (Ben Kingsley).  Fleeing to Britain with a handful of loyal survivors and the compulsory love interest, an Eastern female warrior, Mira.  Some doings, then the big battle, then all the loose ends are tied up to commence the story of Arthur.

Aurelius: Who are you?
Ambrosinus:  One who knows humiliation to be a poor teacher, of both men and boys.
Aurelius:  I smell a philosopher.


The missing Roman Ninth Legion has been looked at by different British historians from time to time.  The Ninth Legion disappears from Roman records about 120AD.  It has been assumed that it was no longer serving in Britain by that time and that it had been destroyed in an unknown war near the Danube or whilst serving on the Eastern front.  More recently academics have put forward hypotheses that the Legion was destroyed in Britain during the early years of the reign of Emperor Hadrian, that being part of the reason for building Hadrian’s Wall.

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