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Sword of War (2009)

Barbarossa (original title)
German Emperor Barbarossa will stop at nothing to conquer and build his empire. But a young man from Milan, along with his army of 900 men known as the Company of Death, is prepared to challenge the Emperor.

Director:

Renzo Martinelli

Writers:

Renzo Martinelli (story), Giorgio Schottler (story) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rutger Hauer ... Federico Barbarossa
Raz Degan ... Alberto da Giussano
F. Murray Abraham ... Siniscalco Barozzi
Christo Jivkov ... Gherardo Negro
Antonio Cupo ... Alberto dell'Orto
Cécile Cassel ... Beatrice di Borgogna
Kasia Smutniak ... Eleonora
Ángela Molina ... Ildegarda di Binden (as Angela Molina)
Elena Bouryka Elena Bouryka ... Antonia
Hristo Shopov ... Rinaldo di Dassel
Federica Martinelli Federica Martinelli ... Tessa
Maurizio Tabani Maurizio Tabani ... Giovanni da Giussano
Riccardo Cicogna ... Wibaldo
Gian Marco Tavani ... Lorenzo della Pigna
Robert Alexander Baer Robert Alexander Baer ... Alberto - as a Child
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Storyline

German Emperor Barbarossa will stop at nothing to conquer and build his empire. But a young man from Milan, along with his army of 900 men known as the Company of Death, is prepared to challenge the Emperor.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Battlefields run red with warriors' blood. See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for bloody violence and brief sexuality | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

9 October 2009 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Sword of War See more »

Filming Locations:

Transylvania, Romania See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

EUR30,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,189,887
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (2 parts) (TV) | (Blu-ray)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Part of the budget came from the Lega Nord, an Italian political party that wants separation between north and south Italy and has in the symbol the legendary warrior Alberto da Giussano. The leader of this party, Umberto Bossi, had a small part. in the movie. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Well worth watching
25 September 2010 | by WargeSee all my reviews

Let me first say that I watched this film with no preconceptions about it whatsoever - what I knew was that it was about emperor Friederich I, "Barbarossa" ("some German king from the dark ages, wasn't he?"). So, I watched this as a very entertaining view into a sadly forgotten part of history, this fight over the lands how they had become when the Roman Empire was crumbling leaving a massive power vacuum and the German tribes had begun to finally become united.

The film depicted this fight over the desolated areas in northern Italy as far as I can tell very well, showing both the reasoning of Emperor Barbarossa and his queen Beatrix (who appears to have been his personal cheer-leader) and the opposing side, the Company of Death, a loosely formed army from the Italian city states. This opposing side bears a strong resemblance to both the historical American Revolution from which it seemed like they loaned half of the freedom slogans, as well as from Braveheart, which probably provided the other half. Don't get me wrong, I like freedom, but one can only do so much with it, and the cries for freedom became a little silly at times - especially since it appeared to me that they only went to war because they didn't like to be taxed by a German emperor...

Speaking of which: The film is called Barbarossa, but most of the film and the very evident sympathies, lies with Barbarossa's enemies. This is not a biography film, but it would have earned even better marks if it would have been.

So, how was it then? It was grand in scope, ranging in at several years and the SFX - especially the 'Bagdhad by Night - medieval style' sequences were great. However, using such large time frames makes one loose sight on events and details, which is a shame.

Rutger Hauer makes an excellent, if somewhat downplayed Barbarossa, and the rest of the cast make solid performances - no one mentioned, no one forgotten.

It will take a couple of hours to sit thorough this film, but those are hours well spent.


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