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History more interesting
arabianights-books8 May 2006
Presumably the writer of this mini-series had to read the history of Attila and Aetius before he could change it into the pap presented. You would think it would have been easier to leave as written, and certainly more interesting.

Just to give one example. After the battle and the death of the Roman ally King Theodoric, this movie has Theordoric's son insisting of leaving immediately to fight his brothers for the throne, and thus depriving the Roman general Aetius of the strength to decisively destroy Attila. Thus a mildly interesting and fairly predictable plot as far as it goes. The historical reality is that Aetius advised the son to leave to take care of his brothers as he was insisting on revenging his father against Attila. Aetius preferred not to destroy the Huns as his and Rome's whole strategy at that time had been to play groups such as the Huns off against other barbarian tribes that had entered or threatened the Empire. To my mind a more interesting development.

Of course it might have taken slightly more effort to get this idea across to viewers but the effort would have been a far more memorial series which the poor sets and acting could never achieve. While I can understand budget limitations that make good sets and hordes of extras difficult I cannot understand the almost perverse need to change history even when the original is much more interesting.

An amusing watch just the same but disappointing that for the cost of another writer it could not have been so much better.
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Not historical, mildly entertaining
macman-84 June 2001
Warning: Spoilers
WILDLY historically inaccurate, with some dialogue that will no doubt bring chuckles, this little mini-series still manages to be entertaining. Whether that is due to the acting and action or the goofs made by the producers remains to the individual viewer. What's wrong with this little movie? Let's start with the Huns and their king, Attila. The Huns were a Turko-Mongol race, short, swarthy, and usually with a somewhat bowlegged stance that came from fighting, riding, eating, and even sleeping on horseback. Attila himself was described by many contemporary historical sources as short, squat, a very thin wisp of a beard on his chin, and a flat nose. He was also middle-aged at the time of his great conquests. This army and king as represented in the movie are all basically Caucasians. People, there ARE Turkish/Asiatic actors and extras out there for hire .... and all the women swooning over Gerard Butler in these comments need to balance this with historical fact. The comment that only a "good looking" person could have united/led so many is very amusing - apparently no one has taken a close look at Hitler, Mussolinni, Stalin, or Winston Churchill for that matter. Also, the costumes of these Huns look like Avars, not Hunnish culture. Let's take a look at the Romans - the Empire of the fifth century was VERY different from the empire of the great caesars ... yet the uniforms and civilian dress of the Rome shown here looks no later than the time of Septimius Severus. Sorry, but the horse-hair helmets and leather skirts of the military tribunes were long past - the Romans of this time were wearing breaches and what was left of the legions was highly barbarized and calvary-emphasized. The togas of the civilians had become much more coarse and simple by that time, also. The Empire was basically Christianized by then, too - yet this miniseries depicts paganism as rampant. Another problem was that there just weren't enough extras to make the battles scenes believable. The Huns formed "hordes" - and these were not patrol-sized groups of a hundred horseman riding around - historians show these armies numbered nominally around 60,000. And the main battle - somewhere near modern Chalons or Troyes - the Battle of the Catalaunian Plains - had the combatants numbering somewhere between 300,000 to half a million. Showing this battle to be between a couple of hundred men was anticlimatic in the extreme. Good camerawork could have avoided this ... see BRAVEHEART, FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, SPARTACUS, or CLEOPATRA. Although many may have felt some of the violence was too much in this film, the reality was FAR worse - Attila was mild to those who submitted, but the mass slaughter the Huns committed in battle was rivaled in pre-20th century only by the Mongols of Genghiz Khan. Some cities in Italy were so destroyed that the next generation couldn't accurately find where they existed. Having said all this, I liked the film as a piece of entertainment and taking certain ludicrous errors into consideration, recommend it as a nice diversion. The DVD is nicely authored in 1:77:1 and has some decent extras.
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Good introduction to history
labucher26 January 2005
While this movie may not have been historically accurate, for me it gave me an introduction to a character I have always found fascinating. And what else is the internet good for but looking up a history to find out the facts that the movie was based on.

Because it was a made-for-TV film, and USA at best, you could expect a watered-down version of the main character. I was impressed with all the acting in this movie. Surprised to find Tim Curry but happy to see Powers Boothe, who I respect as an powerful actor. He didn't really have the chance to live up to his potential in this film.

I am taking offense to some of the comments made about Gerard Butler. Yes he is a hunk. But what first drew me to him was his ACTING PRESENCE in other films like Reign of Fire and Timeline. Atilla may not be the springboard for greatness but I believe his talents will soon be showcased in more powerful films.

I viewed Atilla because I wanted to see more of Gerard Butler THE ACTOR and I was not disappointed. I also got to learn more about an historical figure who always intrigued me. Do not peg me as a star struck, fanatical female. I learned long ago that just because someone has looks does not necessarily mean they have talent. Gerard Butler belongs in a class with Jude Law and Russell Crowe.

I would recommend this film for the entertainment value it is and if you want to learn more about Atilla, go to the internet historical sites and get your fill.
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Epic portrayal about Attila , including court intrigue , romances , treason and impressive battles
ma-cortes30 July 2017
Attila's feats in the Western and Eastern Roman Empires with a lot of historical incorrectness . This Attila" (2001) miniseries by Dick Lowry boasts a good cast , such as Gerard Butler as Attila the Hun , Powers Boothe as Aetius , Simmone Mackinnon as Ildico and Red Rogers as Valentinian . It deals with Attile from when in childhood he saw how his his parents were killed , as well as his kingdom , until death , and is set during the waning days of Roman Empire , as the barbarian Huns are making their way toward Europe . A valiant warrior named Attila (Gerard Butler) violently assumes Hun leadership confronting his brother Bleda (Tommy Flanagan) . But this is not enough for him , Attila seeks to create an empire and he will stop at nothing to accomplish it . In an attempt to quell a Hun invasion , ambitious Roman General Flavius Aetius (Powers Boothe) attempts to form an alliance with the eastern Roman emperor Theodosius (Tim Curry) and Visigoth King Theodoric (Liam Cunningham) scheming against their mutual enemy . While Attile attempts to march against Rome but this plan backfires , and it soon becomes clear that a violent confrontation between all three armies awaits . Against the ravaging hordes of Attila stood a warrior's might and a people's faith! . Against his ruthless pagan lusts , the power of a woman's love!

This is a spectacular TV series full of historic inaccuracy and being well starred Gerard Butler as Attila . It results to be an epic adventure yarn set in 5th-Century about the chieftain Attila the Hun who joins the warring clans under his banner , as he was a leader of the Hunnic Empire , a tribal confederation consisting of Huns , Ostrogoths , and Alans among others , on the territory of Central and Eastern Europe , while Roman Empire is bristling under the leadership of cunning General Aetius and of the incompetent Caesar Valentinian . This spectacular movie contains action , breathtaking battles , thrills , romance , hokey historical events and the crowed scenes of the Huns are impressively made . Big production design , lavishly produced , brilliant photography and rousing soundtrack as you'd expect from a big-budgeted TV movie at the time . There takes place a fictitious battle of wits and wills between Attila/Gerard Butler and Aetius/Powers Boothe . Gerard Butler dominates with his bravery this historical adventure , while Valentiniano , being grumpily performed by an overacting Reg Rogers . Great support cast provide some solid secondary interpretations such as : Alice Krige , Liam Cunningham , Kirsty Mitchell , Jonathan Hyde , Steven Berkoff , Tommy Flanagan and Andrew Pleavin as Orestes . Colorful and glimmer cinematography by Steven Fierberg . Evocative as well as thrilling musical score by Nick Glennie-Smith . The motion picture was professionally directed by TV series expert , Dick Lowry, though it has some flaws and historical mistakes .

The picture is partially based on historical events about Attila , Marciano , Valentiniano , Pulcheria and emperor Teodosio . During his reign , Attila was one of the most feared enemies of the Western and Eastern Roman Empires . He crossed the Danube twice and plundered the Balkans, but was unable to take Constantinople . His unsuccessful campaign in Persia was followed in 441 by an invasion of the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire , the success of which emboldened Attila to invade the West. He also attempted to conquer Roman Gaul (modern France) , crossing the Rhine in 451 and marching as far as Orleans before being defeated at the Battle of the Catalaunian Plains . He subsequently invaded Italy , devastating the northern provinces , but was unable to take Rome . As Attila marches across Empire to Rome and things look bleak for the weakened imperial forces . Emperor Valentinian III sent three envoys , the high civilian officers Gennadius Avienus and Trigetius , as well as the Bishop of Rome Leo I , who met Attila at Mincio in the vicinity of Mantua and as the conqueror had an awe of the power of the Christians' God , he obtained from him the promise that he would withdraw from Italy and negotiate peace with the Emperor . Finally , Aecio vanquished Attile in Chalons . He planned for further campaigns against the Romans but died in 453 . After Attila's death his close adviser Ardaric of the Gepids led a Germanic revolt against Hunnic rule, after which the Hunnic Empire quickly collapsed .

Other films dealing with this historical character are the followings : ¨Attila¨(1953) Pietro Francisci with Anthony Quinn , Sofia Loren and Henry Vidal as general Aecio . ¨Sign of the pagan¨(1954) by Douglas Sirk with Jack Palance , Jeff Chandler , Ludmilla Tchérina , Moroni Olsen . And ¨The Nibelungos , vengeance of Siegfried¨ (1967) by Harald Reinl with Herbert Lom as Attila .
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"The Romans have done great things but their time is past. What they have done, we can do. We should rule the world!" - Attila
Cat-Squire6 February 2005
After witnessing the destruction of his village and the death of his father, Attila successfully escapes with his life and is picked up by his uncle, who is king of a group of Huns. Attila grows up to be a strong warrior who has his mind set on invading and, consequently, taking over Rome. The deceitful Roman General Flavius Aetius goes to Attila's village to seek help from the Huns and suggests to Attila's uncle that Attila is to be taken to Rome with Aetius when the battle is over. Aetius is impressed with Attila and takes him under his wing. But when Bleda, Attila's brother, murders their uncle, Attila returns to his village and fights his brother for the throne, and then sets his sights on Rome.

This movie was really enjoyable, although some of the acting was rather stilted. The top actors were Powers Boothe as Flavius Aetius, the excellent Scotsman Gerard Butler in the role of Attila the Hun and, although not having very much to do in the film, only in it for 2 scenes, was Tim Curry who is, as always, terrific and amusing.

This is not a film full of gore, but it survives without it. The action scenes are good and liven the film up a bit but it does not have an excess of gore like other historical battle films.

Thoroughly enjoyable and highly recommended. 8/10 from me! As always, your faithful Scotsman, Cat §quire
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A Romanced Story of Attila the Hun in a Great Epic
claudio_carvalho11 August 2003
"Attila" is a romanced story of Attila the Hun (Gerard Butler), since his childhood, when he lost his parents until his death. The screenplay shows his respect to the great Roman strategist Flavius Aetius (Powers Boothe, with his usual face of 'bad guy'), his loves, the gossips, intrigues and betrayals in Rome, all of these evolved by magic and mysticism. Attila certainly was one of the most evil man along the story, but the screenplay shows him as a great leader, strategist and lover. If you decide to forget the story and attain to the plot itself, you will see and enjoy a great epic movie. The underrated Gerard Butler has another magnificent performance. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "Atila, o Huno" ("Attila, the Hun")
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May not be accurate but still good!
paristeri28 March 2005
Admittedly, this movie may not be accurate, however it did encourage me to look up the actual history..Meanwhile, it was my first introduction to the actor Gerry Butler, for which I am very thankful..I look forward to watching other movies he makes..This movie as well as the subsequent ones, ie Phantom of the Opera, Timeline, Dear Frankie, even Dracula 2000, I think show how much this guy puts into his roles.. I feel he shows real depth to whatever character he portrays- heh- he made me sympathetic to Attila the Hun! Actually I read somewhere that they still celebrate Attila's Birthday in Hungary.. If one puts the story in a historical perspective I believe one could make an argument that our History might have been different if he had prevailed.. The Roman Catholic influence was not all roses..
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Good but definitely TV flavour
cassandr-317 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
In a nutshell, I really liked this miniseries; Gerry Butler kicks serious ass in every way which I'll get into later, but first I have to tear apart the bits that bugged me or made me die laughing from corniness.


Okay, is some of the acting in this movie mind-numbingly cheesy and bad or what??? I almost had to skip right past all the scenes where it's just Aetius and the emperor, even if it meant missing the exposition.

Powers Boothe: his acting improved somewhat when he shared scenes with Gerry - they had a really good on-screen rapport - but otherwise, - nuh-uh! The way he drops the poisoned wine goblet, it's so unnatural and stiff looking, I snert every time I see it!

Simmone Jade McKinnon: I appreciate that doing accents is difficult - but, ADR anyone?


  • N'Kara's peasant girl outfit when we first see her - every other woman in the village is wearing layers of furs and burlap and sh*t, yet our girl is wearing the swimsuit issue "Hun summer gown", revealing most or all of her thighs and cleavage. And don't get me started on that 80's wave hair with the roots showing.

  • how much money did they spend on this? And they couldn't afford real silk velvet for Alice Krige? It's so obviously polyester stretch velvet. Which, um, wasn't invented yet in 400 A.D. (Well, at least they said A.D. and not C.E.).

  • Honoria's sexy blue bath outfit - yeah, it's nice, it looks hot, but uhhh, corsets weren't invented yet either!

  • That Ismay/Titanic guy's Victorian neckerchief under the Roman robes - what the ...?


  • the "N-Kara almost gets killed but Attila spares the hottie" scene - this makes me laugh so hard every time.

HUN DUDE: "But her sword was the bloodiest..."

ATTILA: "And she's the sexiest piece of a$$ this stinking village has ever seen. Don't you know every other woman in the village is wearing layers of furs and burlap and sh*t? So what's your POINT!!!! Shut UP!!!! Don't you know I'm still a virgin? Geez!"

  • the "other guy dies drinking the poisoned cup meant for Aetius and Attila" scene - watch this one over a few times. The goofy double take the guy does when he sees Aetius after having just had a sip - cracks me up so badly. This is right before the "Aetius flings the poisoned cup away from him dramatically having just escaped death" moment (see above Powers Boothe).

Okay, now for the good stuff.

Gerard Butler - I like the look - I didn't think I would, as I saw his Dracula audition first with this look and thought it was way out there, but it's perfect for this movie.

I love that he did most/all of his stunts.

As always with Gerry, tons of range of emotions and believable reality to his performance. The guy was obviously born to be an actor - he's such a pro with only his own experience to draw on.

Of course the beefcake shots rock my socks off no end, but I won't bore you with the details, you know 'em already. If I had to pick a favourite, it would be the scene of him practising archery on horseback shirtless. Yum.

I also really liked Pauline Lynch. The look she gives him after teasing him about the red-haired woman is so poignant. I feel like her. 'Here's this amazing guy that will never notice me, the crazy toadstool'.

I really liked Steven Berkoff too - nice subtlety to his acting - lots conveyed with just a look or a nod.

It doesn't bother me that this is totally historically inaccurate (except for the costumes) - it's a fun ride. I like all the horseback riding and sword-waving, and I thought they did an excellent job filming the horseback duel between Attila and Bleda. The soundtrack has some nice touches too.

Definitely worth buying the DVD!
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A great romp!
dmcmillan0115 May 2005
Who cares if Attila isn't accurate historically? Who cares if Powers Boothe's acting is stilted. Who cares if the costumes are "out of period?" The fabulous scenery is worth the watch. And so is watching that fantastic Scottish rogue, Gerard Butler, playing a powerful Attila. Wish that the real Attila was as sexy, fair, and fabulous as Gerard. The ladies are also good to look at, and do a credible job of acting. The young lady who plays the "witch" is unusual and quite interesting in her part.

The difference between life in Rome and life where Attila lives is striking. From cool marble hallways and communal baths to ragged huts and river baths, it makes you realize just how advanced Rome was in those days.

Gerard Butler, however, was the strength of the series. He has that rare quality that makes it difficult for most people to take their eyes off him. His eyes are chameleon's, changing from penetrating, to loving, to laughing, and back again. Sometimes brown, sometimes hazel, sometimes a stunning green, they appear to change with his moods.

This is an actor to watch. His star is definitely rising.

Dotty McMillan
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This is just bad
vikcy29 February 2004
Ive read some of the comments above, almost everything is said, but being a Hungarian - one of the few nations who keep Atilla in high respect - a nation descendant of the Huns, this period of our history always interested me. First the spelling. I dont have a problem with Attila, thats how the world uses it, he was Atilla or Etele among the Hungarians, Etli for Germans...does not matter, it derives from the Turk-Hungarian word ata-father. What is the main problem in this film is the portrayal of the Huns. Just to point out the most annoying and untrue stuff. Huns attacking on foot ? Huns charging mindlessly with swords ? Cmon guys, we researched their exact warfare, strategy and tactics by now, and this is NOT that
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We want more of Gerard Butler
mariav15 February 2001
I watched "Attila" quite by accident and I was so glad that I did because I didn't know Gerard Butler existed. His performance as Attila was captivating. The entire production was immensely entertaining and I watched it as many times as it was on the USA network. I had heard of Attila, the Hun, but was not very interested to learn about him, but this movie changed that because he became alive for me.

Needless to say, we want more of Gerard Butler!! I wanted to find out more about him on the web, but there was next to nothing. I would love to see a bio. ....And those eyes!!!!!
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Why does Hollywood rewrite history, when the truth is more interesting?
hughdwilson22 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
The factual errors in this movie are quite simply astounding. It's shameful. Shame shame shame. Great acting at times, especially from Boothe, but the screenplay is appalling.

1. Attila and the Huns were Turkic, not Caucasian. Contemporaries descriptions of him painted him as a Mongol. Flat nose etc. Genghis Khan traced his lineage to the Huns.

2. He and Flavius Aetius were both hostage exchanges as children. Attila spent time as a child in Rome, the same time Flavius was with the Huns. That could have made for an interesting film.

3. Attila jointly ruled with his older brother (who I believe was from the same father? Ruga was both mens uncle) for a fair while, building the empire together, before he allegedly killed him and ruled solo.

4. Aetius and Attila became friends when Aetius spent a brief exile with the Huns. Why leave that out?

5. this is what wikipedia says about Honoria's situation and the dowry etc:

"However Valentinian's sister Honoria, in order to escape her forced betrothal to a senator, had sent the Hunnish king a plea for help—and her ring—in the spring of 450. Though Honoria may not have intended a proposal of marriage, Attila chose to interpret her message as such; he accepted, asking for half of the western Empire as dowry. When Valentinian discovered the plan, only the influence of his mother Galla Placidia convinced him to exile, rather than kill, Honoria; he also wrote to Attila strenuously denying the legitimacy of the supposed marriage proposal. Attila, not convinced, sent an embassy to Ravenna to proclaim that Honoria was innocent, that the proposal had been legitimate, and that he would come to claim what was rightfully his."

more truth is found here:

I wish Hollywood would learn that truth is more interesting than finding fabled swords and screwing around with what actually happened.

This is a lame film with bad dialogue, terrible motivations for the protagonists (I'm just starting to build my empire" puhleeeeez!!!), and zero credibility. What a shame. So much potential yet again wasted.
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Hollywood, once again, steps into their own tangled web...
EvilTommy6 April 2003
There was just too much left out or made up on this one. The acting was fairly descent given the stunted script, but history went right out the window. Example: When the King died, Attila allowed his brother to rule for 13 years, before he came to power. You need drama, agreed, tension, absolutely, but there's an old adage that goes, 'Truth is stranger than fiction.' It seems they couldn't decide how much of a hero or villain to portray the main character as in the show. I never really cared about Attila and his personal problems but rather was more interested in the doings of the diabolical Roman. They should have called it 'Flavius' since he had all the good lines and was portrayed by an aggressive Powers Boothe. He took over every scene. I liked Reg Rogers as the quirky Emperor Valentinian as well. Typically, the battle scenes depicting the Roman army devolved into a massive one on one brawl, rather than the disciplined tactics that gave Rome their empire. I was not pleased at the end of the four hours - they killed you with commercials - and regretted the time wasted.
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russem316 March 2006
Warning: Spoilers
For someone who is a history buff, especially of the period this movie, Attila, is trying to portray (roughly 430 AD to 455 AD), I was happy to finally see a Roman Empire movie specifically about this period. Most Roman Empire movies before were either of the Julius Caesar or Marcus Aurelius periods (i.e. Gladiator). That said, there are a lot of historical inaccuracies (due to budgetary constraints for example, they used August era Roman costumes), but I was willing to overlook that because of the filmmakers' attempt to try to represent the widening cultural differences between the divided Western and Eastern (Byzantine) Roman Empires (the empire divided in 395 AD) - a good example is showing the Western Emperor Valentinian III as portrayed as a Roman in Augustus era Imperial regalia whereas the Eastern Emperor Theodosius II is accurately portrayed in more Oriental Persian influenced garb. Ironically, the actor that steals the show is not the title character Atilla but Powers Boothe, Flavius Aetius, also known by his nickname, the last Roman. Again, while there are many inaccuracies, this movie is entertaining for showing a period of Roman history (during its decline) that rarely is explored. A 7 out of 10.
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Don't think it's accurate history
mmereos27 May 2003
I didn't realize this was a made-for-tv mini series until after I rented it. I seemed pretty entertaining, but it was 3 hours long. It reminded me of a cheezy show that one would see on lifetime network; lots of over-dramatization ,and a story to be told.

After the movie I looked up the history of Attila and wasn't surprised at all that much of the story in the movie was fabricated.
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A Fun, If Not Slightly Inaccurate at Times, Look at Attila and Late Roman History
bayardhiler18 June 2015
Attila the Hun. It's a name that conjurers up the deepest feeling of fear in those who hold civilization in high regard, so much so the very name itself has become a by word for barbarian and brutality. With that said, what better character to focus on than in an exclusive two part mini-series, like the 2001 USA Network produced "Attila" does. Starring Gerard Butler in the title role, it's a film that dives into the late stage of Roman history, the rise and increasing strength of the barbarians who would eventually overtake her, and of course, Attila and his ferocious Huns. In the beginning of the film, we are told that Rome, "although weak, decadent, and corrupt", is still the most powerful nation on earth. Then a new people, the Huns, appear on the scene, to challenge the might of Rome herself (Shivers!). From this, we are introduced to Attila as a boy living with his tribe on the Hungarian plains, when one day, a raiding party murders his father and immediate family and it is only through his wits and refusal to back down that Attila survives. After being taken in by his Uncle Rua (Steven Berkoff), Attila grows up to be a master warrior and strategist, competing with his brother Bleda (Chibs himself, Tommy Flanagan) just as much as he is with his uncle's reluctance to take on Rome. He soon gets his chance, though, through a series of events that start with recently released Roman general Flavius Aetius (Powers Booth) coming to the Huns to ask their help in defeating a group of Goths, another barbarian group, who are threatening Gaul (Modern day France). While at first an ally of Aetius and Rome, Attila eventually gains enough power of his own to ransack and invade the Eastern Roman Empire and in time, the West as well. Everything leads up to a battle of wills between the forces of civilization and the barbarian horde, or so the Romans would have us believe. In truth, as history tells us, the Romans were just as savage and conniving in their own way and through this film, we are able to see that as well.

"Attila", although not a perfect film, is entertaining and a fun way to view some history. As far as acting is considered, Gerard Butler pulls the head role off without a hitch. Determined to lead his people to greatness, we never feel that Butler isn't giving it his all in the role, be he riding his horse into battle or acting with depth in the dramatic scenes involving his true love, N'Kara (Simmone Mackinnon). Believing it his destiny to conquer and rule the world, we feel eager for Butler's Attila to succeed, though it should probably be noted that the real Attila was someone who wasn't afraid to massacre people and even whole cities if it suited his purposes and to be fair, the film does show a little bit of that here and there. As to the other roles, everyone here hits their mark, whether it's Power Booth as the scheming but somewhat noble Aetius, Reg Rogers as the childish Emperor Valentinian, Alice Krige as his conniving mother, Placida, or Simmone Mackinnon in the dual roles of N'Kara and Ildico and many more who I don't have the space for. Another plus is the ability of the filmmakers to add a little bit of magic, prophecy, and intrigue to the history the film is depicting. Director Dick Lowry and writer Robert Cochran should be congratulated for making us, the audience, root for the "Scourge of God".

Even though this was produced on a television budget, "Attila" manages to do a reasonably good job of transporting us back in time, albeit with a few inaccuracies. Many of these you can find on IMDb's goofs page, but one prominent example is the Roman uniforms used in the film. By this time, the Roman Empire of Caesar and Augustus was but a distant memory. Rome at this time was broken into two empires - one in the east, the other the west - and was all but relying on barbarian tribes for its defense, which often involved pitting one group against the other. So one would not have seen the impressive legionaries uniforms during this time that you see here. Another big one involves the Huns themselves, who probably would have had Asian features instead of Caucasian ones (Interesting thing about the Huns, though, is that we're still not sure where they actually first came from and it's quite possible they may have intermingled with other peoples during their migration to and time in Europe). Still, mistakes aside, the movie boasts some decently done battle scenes, good action, captivating story telling, and a little bit of sex appeal. "Attila" may not be the most accurate look at the Huns and late Roman history, but why let that spoil a good story? And besides, at the very least, the movie may serve to inspire people to look into the real history of Attila the Hun, as it did me when I saw it as a young boy in my mother's living room all those years ago. And on that note, check out some historical fun and intrigue with 2001's "Attila".
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Terrible! It is not a historical drama!
vic44117 September 2001
Over the past few years I ask myself a question who produces and directs movies like that which pretend to be serious historical epics, but rather remind Batman and Robyn type of thing. There are so many mistakes in this movie that it will take me a few days to list all of them. Just a few:

The story starts in 400 AD and ends with Atilla's death in circa 454 AD. In the movie Atilla visits Rome, which he never did and no mention whatsoever of Gothic invasion of Alarich and fall of Rome in 410 AD. Roman army (and public too!) pictured in costumes of say 100 AD (which still would be wrong). In all Hollywood movies with Roman theme they make the same mistake over and over again by showing helmets with fethers, rectangular shields, etc. All this was completely out of use in Roman army by about 200AD and by 400AD Roman army consisted mostly of barbarian hired soldiers and scale armour with round shields (with a lot of christian motives on it) were largely in use. To show Roman army as they did in the movie is like showing US Army in WW11 in Revolutionary War uniforms. Decisive battle shown in the movie with 200-300 hundred extras was perhaps the greatest battle in the ancient times where by some accounts over 500,000 warriors took part. Roman side was represented not only by legions and Goths, but also but Allans and other tribes friendly to Rome. Atilla and Hunnes were most definetely asian in origin, not picture-like Caucasian as they shown. etc, etc, etc. Anyway, if you just want to relax with a few beers and watch guys with the swords chasing each other, then this movie is OK. If you are after a serious historical drama - don't waste your time watching it.
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big screen epic on TV - Wow!
pinetreefive17 February 2001
This was an astonishingly great series.I don't usually watch mini-series as a rule, but I caught the end of this one and then came back for more! Kudos to USA for giving us quality TV in a "reality TV" world. Everything about this was standout - acting, filming, writing, directing, everything. The attention to detail was superb and it was a gripper from the start.

Please produce this as a video for home purchase!

Finally, where is Gerard Butler and who has been hiding him. We need to hear more about him and see more of him on the big and little screen. He is not only great to look at, but one of the best actors I've seen in ages. Russell Crow - who's that?

More More More Gerry Butler.
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Told me very little
heckles5 February 2001
I hate to disagree with the prior analysises, but this movie told me next to nothing about Attila that I didn't know before. I knew that he slew his brother to gain the throne; I knew that he died on his wedding night. But what I wanted to know is why, when Rome had managed to repel barbarian attack after barbarian attack, these barbarians should suddenly show up, make so much of an inroad and spread so much panic down into the city itself. I believe that climate change, forcing the Huns away from their traditional steepe grazing areas, had something to do with it? Or one might also mention Rome's increasing dependence on Germanic contract armies to hold the frontier. Somebody said this was the next "Braveheart". I have to agree, as I thought "Braveheart" also was a lot of history on the superficial level as well. In both, I noticed, when towns were taken by the hero the camera carefully steered away from any scenes of slaughter and rapine, the better to keep him untarnished. I shouldn't have wasted my time.
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Gibbons would be delighted
André-73 August 2001
to see how closely this mini-series stayed to history. The producers managed to strike a balance between the characters of Atius and Attila, giving both humanity and ruthlessness. The final tag line sums up beautifully the role both played in the histories of their respective empires.
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One of the greatest heroes of our civilization
Lady_Targaryen24 March 2006
Warning: Spoilers
''Attila'' is one of the epic movies I like the most. I only don't give a higher vote for this movie, because I found that the story, after N'Kara's death, became quite boring and without the same climax as before. Not to mention that Ildico being identical to N'Kara, and poisoning Atilla doesn't help to make the story excellent for me. Atilla never was a king as well.

I like to see,anyway, Gerard Butler in one of his best roles, and I need to say that I never saw him so handsome in all my life! The long wavy black hair and the skin tanned really suited him well!

The story of this movie is basically concentrated in Atilla's life, showing some important things that were happening in Roman Empire at the same time Atilla was becoming one of the best Hun's warriors. We have inaccuracies and factual errors, but even so, a good epic is always welcome!
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You'd be better off Watching This than Alexander
parhat18 December 2004
The movie, if you compared against this year's (2004) historical movies such as Troy, or Alexander. The movie is great considering it was only an mini series and a low budget. It could easily fool me into believing this was another major movie, if you ignore FX, Musical scores, camera techniques and beginning titles.

While the general stories were in general accurate, they are some minor inaccuracies such as reasons for assassination of Atelius, and cause of death of Attila (which many thought his wife killed him, but whether it was by a knife or poison) remains entirely on speculations.

While it lacks theatrical dramatics, FX, etc, the story is first rate and the plots was done quite well, such as the scheming Romans. While the weakness of the movie rests with a somewhat uncharacteristic Attila the Roman actors were surprisingly well done. The director's lack of understanding of Attila was what made the movie bad. In fact I rooted for the Romans all the way.

While actors in general were bad, with exception of Powers Boothe, the movie did very well and would easily outdo Gladiator, Alexander and Troy if they had more budget. If I would just rate on the strength of the story alone (which I do), this movie would be better than Gladiator.

Gladiator, while the story was good, was not believable enough at least for me from the point of view of historical inaccuracies were too great to ignore. While Attila was somewhat inaccurate, it was convincing enough for me to enjoy the movie. In fact, what's the point in Gladiator? How can the general become a Gladiator was a sore point I refused to accept, especially when the Emperor take a passing interest in him. The conflict of both sides in Attila vs the Romans were more believable.

Oh yes, one note: the reasons why Attila did so well fighting was almost its entire income (usually tributes) was spent in the war machine than building coliseums, theaters, etc. With that in mind, one wonders whether today's war of terrorism will help our economy or will it lead us to once again into another Dark Ages.

I give it 8/10.
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What the?
Dark Eye16 August 2001
This series is very, very disturbing, on the fact that it is one of the most politically incorrect film I have ever watched.

I begged my friend to send me a copy from the States. Oh boy, I shouldn't have watched this.

Here's a scenario:

Should I tell Ang Lee to remake "Braveheart" with only asian actors in it? I don't know, I'm tempted. He'll do the movie justice by making the Scots as people of Chinese decent, so we can educate the U.S audiences about what REAL history is all about. Maybe Hollywood will be happy. Sort of reminded me of Fu Manchu, if you ask me.

Whoever produced, directed, wrote, or casted this movie deserves to have a miserable life.
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spectacle over truth again
gpenton20 June 2001
This is another mammoth production of a familiar historical epic that runs short of detail and truth. It provides the mainstream media-required melodrama to provide a continuity to this saga of this strategic psychopath, and yet does contain some vivid recreations of a few of the thousands of extermination campaigns his Hunnic hordes were responsible for. The characters appear consistent and believable, especially the last dynastic emperor Valentinian III, who's 32 year decadent reign was the backdrop to most of the drama. But there were few references to some other harsh realities occurring in the over-run territories, let alone the sack of Rome by the eventual allies the Visigoths (revenge for which could have provided the motive for the [historically unsubstantiated] assassination of Alaric's son Theodoric on the orders of Aetius. There could have been at least a slight reference to the Vandals now harassing Mediterranean ports [indeed there could have been a scene in which frenzied refugees from Carthage announce that the Vandals have taken the city, and that instead of grain harvests Rome can now expect psychotic pirates on the way]! As for the gap between the withdrawal from Gaul and the (again unsubstantiated) poisoning scene, I can only figure that they ran out of time and money to film the Italian desolation caused by this 'scourge of God'- shame, considering the possibilities for the special effects of Attila's vision above pope Leo! But it will be well worth it to attract a few more thousand viewers to ancient history readings....
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I fail to see the point
robertejohnston13 April 2003
Why make a biopic that is so far from recorded fact that it could easier be part of Conan that barbarian series !! Its depressing to see that such production actually get financial backing. I would love to see some movies based around this period by theatrical license only goes so far.
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