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Kingdom of heaven

The film is very keen to use this backdrop to make moral points, some of which are worth making. When Ballion takes his oath as a knight he swears to protect the helpless and perhaps more surprisingly to always tell the truth even if it leads to his death. During the final struggle with Saladin his primary concern is not victory on the field of battle but that the lives of Jerusalem’s citizens should be saved. On the other hand, despite Ballion’s apparent piety, he has no qualms about committing adultery with another man’s wife and while the film is not as universally damning of Christianity as it could have been it takes the postmodern standpoint that all religions are equally true.


More swords and sandals

KINGDOM OF HEAVEN Director: Ridley Scott Cert. 15

Kingdom of Heaven (released earlier this summer) is the latest ‘swords and sandals’ epic from director Ridley Scott. Set in the 12th century, it tells the story of Ballion, a blacksmith wanted for murder, who runs away to the Crusades and ends up defending Jerusalem against the famous Islamic general Saladin.