Egyptian Tales Galore Essay

Egyptian Tales Galore Essay

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When Cleopatra came out in 1963, it was running on the budget of $44 million ($297 in 2007 dollars). The movie follows Cleopatra VII, last queen and monarch of Ancient Egypt from 48 BCE (allying with Caesar) to her suicide in 31 BCE. Cleopatra was born in 69 BCE to Ptolemy XII and an unknown mother and she would later inherit the throne along with her brother Ptolemy XIII when her father died in 51 BCE. Her brother had gotten Cleopatra to leave Egypt the same Caesar came chasing his rival Pompey into Egypt. They crossed paths and became allies against Ptolemy XIII, getting Cleopatra’s power as the sole queen back along with a son, Caesarion. After Caesar’s assassination in 44 BCE, Cleopatra was brought back to Rome 3 years later and had an affair with Marc Antony, becoming allies with him to take down Octavian, heir of the Roman Republic at the time. Octavian defeated the joint army effort of the lovers and Antony committed suicide thinking Cleopatra did while Cleopatra committed suicide two weeks after, letting her children and Egypt go under Rome’s rule. To be able to analyze how the inaccuracies of the film affect the overall accuracy of the movie, we must check the inaccuracy of the costume design, character/figure portrayal and set design and set facts.
A major aspect of the movie Cleopatra that was portrayed inaccurately was the costume design. (i) The first thing to know is how traditional Egyptians dressed in the times of Cleopatra. Women wore extremely conservative clothing. (ii) “Unlike the modern western world, women's clothing in Ancient Egypt tended to be more conservative than that of men. Throughout the Old, Middle and New Kingdom, the most frequently used costume for women was the simple sheath dress,” (womeninthea...


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...ve ruin the plot of the film. However, since most moviegoers went to see romantic aspect, especially between Cleopatra and Mark Antony (Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton who play the actors had a “newsworthy” affair), the little details the film addressed incorrectly went unnoticed by most. Overall, its easy to see that the film stuck to the general story very well which is what viewers mostly wanted. It’s important to realize that epics like this film showcase the many, important events of human history, a subject most people don’t care for. Keeping good accuracy helps connect the viewers to our history, to help realize that things like this did happen many years ago. Cleopatra didn’t portray the events exactly as they happened, but they portrayed them enough to the point that you were rooting for Cleopatra, even though you knew she wouldn’t ultimately make it.


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