The best -- misrepresentation
On Oliver Stone's "Alexander"
November 29, 2004
When I heard that Oliver Stone had directed a movie about the
life of Alexander, I was thrilled and couldn't wait to watch it.
In fact, I went to the very first screening in Canada,
The first hour was fairly
boring. Eventually after about an hour and a half we see the
most important and historic battle of Alexander with the Persians.
enough, as usual in Hollywood, the Iranians spoke Arabic, and
they were all shorter than the average human being.
the Iranians fight
their Arab swords in Arab garb, and loosing the war to
Greeks, who were obviously fighting for the freedom of the
Persian people, I was fascinated to see inhabitants of Babylon
in the streets cheering their loss to the Greeks, and happily welcoming
In Oliver Stone's eyes, Westerners own the whole
world and if you're not one of them, then you're too dumb to tell
between your king and some other guy who doesn't even look like
him. Even if you do realize the
you're still happy to welcome the new guy, because the
Persian king was definitely a cruel leader, as oppose to Alexander
was the nicest king ever.
It's funny how Americans seem to portray the world of 323 B.C.
like today's. They wonder why the majority of the world's
population is not really in favor of them and blame Islamic fundamentalism,
jealousy and "stupid European snobs"
for their unpopularity.
I'm no fan of Islamic fundamentalism
or Europeans, but I can see why the people of the world aren't
very fond of Americans. They showed Persians, the ancestors of
today's Iranians, as violent, backward, and primitive people
Just because Iran is being led by a bunch of backward,
primitive radical Muslims today, that doesn't mean that this ancient
country has always been led by primitive people. The Persian
culture is richer than that of any Western country and it rivals
ancient civilizations such as China and Egypt.
After the loss of the Persian army, as the great historians of
east and west tell us, Alexander went to Susa and Persepolis
and conquered and looted those cities. The burnt remains of
Persepolis still stand in the Fars desert in south-central Iran.
None of those facts were mentioned in the movie.
At the end of the day, the movie to some extent, harmed the credibility
and greatness of Alexander; for if the Persians were a bunch of
foolish, evil, disorganized barbarians, almost anybody could've
Everything said, the best part of the movie was Alexander's
marriage to a Persian. According to Stone, Alexander's wife
comes from somewhere in today's Turkmenistan or Kazakhstan,
and yet she was played by a black woman. Funny or tragic, I don't
know, you be the judge. Blacks have never lived in that area,
but historical and geographical facts did not interest Stone.
As one of my friends said, this movie
was a typical Hollywood movie, and the main goal was to get
a hot actress and actor on the screen and do injustice
right and left. Stone probably thought that since Americans
are clueless about history and the world, there's no need
to reflect the truth.
I found Alexander to be a very confusing movie. It was
blurry about many historic events, and it left many stories untold.
This movie is very insulting to me and to those who have a brain,
read history, and separate fact from fiction.