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James Le Gros,
Solomon, Prophet and the King, has asked God to give him an ideal kingdom which has never been given to anybody before. He is told to prepare himself and his subjects with evil and unearthly creatures that haunt the men.
One of the greatest travellers in human history, twenty-one-year-old law student Ibn Battutah set out alone to Mecca from Tangiers in 1325 and returned to Morocco almost thirty years later. This is the story of his first pilgrimage, book-ended with never-before seen documentary footage of the contemporary Hajj. Filmed for initial presentation in IMAX and other giant screen cinemas.Written by
I think I understand Artemis' frustration insofar as very little exists in cinema on Ibn Battutah, one of the world's most influential travelers, unequaled among great explorers in my mind since the 14th Century. A 3 hour Hollywood epic would certainly do his Rihla ("travels") justice but I have to say by focusing on IB's departure from home on his first pilgrimage to Mecca this Imax film blew me away with its stunning imagery and music as well as its open spiritual approach to the Hajj.
The aerial shots of pilgrims meandering across various deserts were enough to blow my mind. And as a non-Muslim, to witness the rituals inside the Great Mosque was an unforgettable and touching experience. Perhaps a devout Muslim would be more technical in his/her appreciation of the film.
I saw the film at a festival in Paris (where it won Public Prize) and noticed how moved the Muslim audience was, which made up about half of the audience when I attended. I highly recommend this film. Imax films can be spectacular visually but predictable in subject matter, rarely extending beyond animal or sport topics. This one delivers the spectacle you would expect and applies it to a moving dramatic line that enlightened and moved me.
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