Tuesday, January 27, 2009
The Last Templar
Did anyone else watch The Last Templar on NBC? It was shown as a four-hour miniseries on Sunday and Monday nights. I'd read the book by Raymond Khoury when it came out a couple of years ago, since I'm a total Templar freak, and I remembered enjoying it, but I'd forgotten most of the details, so a movie version sounded good to me.
What I did remember was the exciting opening scene in which four men, dressed like Knights Templar, ride through the streets of New York to an art museum where priceless treasures from the Vatican are on display. The men ride their horses up the museum steps, behead a police officer then commit Grand Theft Artifacts. The opening scene was surely written with a movie in mind, esp. since Khoury was a screenwriter before he became a novelist, and the movie opener didn't disappoint.
What I didn't remember was Tess, the female protagonist played by Mira Sorvino, being so annoying. I really didn't remember the book Tess grabbing a crozier from the museum exhibit, jumping on a police horse in her cocktail dress and 4-inch stillettos and chasing the robbers into Central Park. I re-read the opening of the book and nope, that didn't happen. Excuse my snark, but it's like the screenwriters thought the character wasn't interesting enough as written so they turned her into a cross between Carrie Bradshaw and Indiana Jones. I shouldn't be surprised since Hollywood often dumbs down female characters. I don't think the problem was with Mira Sorvino's performance, she just didn't have much to work with. Neither did Scott Foley as a bland FBI agent, and I know he can do action; I watch him on The Unit all the time.
The plot wasn't much changed and the story is fairly interesting, and if you hadn't read the book you might have enjoyed it. Anyone else have an opinion?