Filmtip: Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World [2003]

Vrijdag 31 juli 2009 van 20:30 tot 22:55 uur op RTL 5. Avonturenfilm met morele dilemma’s en J.S. Bach.

Steven D. Greydanus: Weir focuses on moral and existential issues, especially questions around whether or when moral obligations such as keeping promises or completing one’s mission may become contingent upon circumstance. Ironically, as Aubrey and Maturin lock horns over whether to continue to pursue the ship’s mission, each winds up arguing alternately for a rigorous and an open-ended interpretation of duty. At first, debating the viability of their mission, Aubrey is the rigorist and Maturin the voice of discretion, but later, when Aubrey makes a promise to Maturin on which he later wishes to renege, Maturin is the one insisting on moral rigor while Aubrey pleads circumstantial necessity!

For all that, Master and Commander is more about action than ideas. Not that the film is non-stop battle scenes; on the contrary, action junkies are liable to be bored to tears by what passes for hot pursuit in an 18th-century sea battle, which amounts to anxiously watching another square-rigger somewhere near the horizon. Yet Weir maintains tension throughout, punctuated with clever bits of strategy and excitement, and only when necessary boiling over into all-out combat.

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