So we went to see Troy. Impressive movie.
Some semi-coherent thoughts:
The difference between the Greeks and the Trojans is marked: the Greeks are muscled brutes (Ajax and Menelaos) who talk of conquest and honor. They talk the language of blood. The Trojans, on the other hand, talk about feelings, about their faith in the gods, about love. They talk the language of emotions. One gets a lot of respect for the Trojans (though their decisions are not always the right ones): they look after their own, they understand each other's emotions.
Achilles is un-greek, in that he has a burning passion to make a name for himself. Achilles is more of a Trojan than a Greek, in that respect. And that is why he is in constant conflict with Agamemnon. Agamemnon would see his own brother die, and waste the lives of thousands of his soldiers to fulfill his ambition. He makes snivelling idiots of the other kings.
Odysseus is shrewd (as to be expected of him): he pays lip service to Agamemnon (because he has to lead his people with the realities of life), but he speaks his mind in private. That is why Achilles respects him.
The movie is very 'corporeal': when the men move into battle, you hear them breathing heavily. You hear the creak of leather armour. You can almost smell it. Very well done, it really evokes the feeling of an ancient world full of dirt, grit and blood.
The gods are conspicously absent. No meddling in mortal affairs, no golden apple, just people being human. It places more emphasis on the human characters, which is probably a wise decision.
If you expect "Illiad, the movie", you'll be dissapointed. It's "based on", not "the movie of". And if they ever make a movie based on the Odyssee with Sean Bean as Odysseus, I'm so going to see it!
We had originally planned to go to the brewery afterwards, but the Red Bull Soapbox Race (which we didn't go to, on purpose) had already finished -- so the whole city was innundated with tourists. And a slight headache was forming, so we decided to call it a day and head back home.