Conquest 1453 (2012)

Devrim Evin, Ibrahim Celikkol, Dilek Serbest, Cengiz Coskun,
After the death of his father Murat II, Mehmet II ascends to the Ottoman throne. After braving internal and external enemies, he decides to complete what he was destined to do - conquer Constantinople.
  • 6.6 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2018-09-07 Added:
  • Melih Esat Acil, Atilla Engin, Irfan Saruhan, Writer:
  • Faruk Aksoy, Director:
  • Servet Aksoy, Ayse Germen, Producer:

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Trailer:

6 / 10

The Fall of Constantinople...and the "Fall" of Truth

This movie tells the story of the Life of Mehmed II...the Fall of Constantinople...well, you don't have to be a historian to realize the unprecedented distortion of History. I watched this movie with the best intentions, i wanted to like it, since this was the first time that such a historical event as the Fall of Constantinople was depicted in the big screen. However, at the end of the film, the general feeling was lukewarm. I would like to judge this movie both as a piece of art, and as a piece of history telling.. Production was good. There was a good effort in depicting Constantinople with special effects, and credit should be given to the ones responsible for this. The "bird's view" shots of the city were impressive, Hagia Sophia, Hippodrome, Palaces, the Gates..all can be easily compared to shots of Rome in Gladiator or the shots of Babylon in Alexander. However, there were some problematic "green background" shots where the special effects were poor and fakeness was obvious, especially in shots were actors were implemented. The script was average, not too complicated, kept really simple..but faithful to the Ottomans' point of view..and the direction..well, it was average to bad, with awkward imbalances and gaps. This, in combination with some bad acting made things worse, especially for the first half of the movie. Another issue I would like to note is the absolute miscast for the film. The actors chosen to portray certain characters were purposely selected. Someone could easily see the good and noble Mehmed II, and the "ruthless, almost satanic" face of Emperor Constantine XI Palaiologos. The second half of the film was more enjoyable for me. The battles were OK and, as i have already mentioned, it was nice to see at last in a movie the Siege of Constantinople, as Hollywood insists on depicting only the Crusades in Jerusalem, the Battles of Joan of Arc and the skirmishes of Robin Hood. However, I can't help it but judge the movie here as far as the history depiction is concerned...and this depiction could not be more inaccurate... Of course, from the Ottoman point of view, there were so many Turkish heroes that distinguished either with their actions of heroism, or their death. But why this story telling is kept one sided? Why is it kept secret that the city had only 7,000 soldiers defending it? Why is it kept secret that the Ottomans entered the city from a small, unguarded gate? Why is it kept secret that Giustiniani was wounded by a cannonball? Why, by the way, is he depicted as evil? And why we hear nothing about the Emperor's last stand in the battle? This is what annoyed me the most...Constantine Palaiologos was fighting alongside his troops. After realizing that the city is doomed, he tore his imperial suite and no one could distinguish him from the rest of the soldiers. He died fighting, defending his city, his people and his faith...he was depicted throughout the movie but his last stand was somehow suddenly forgot by the filmmakers...and last, but not least..without any intention to criticize the Turks but with all due respect the last scene of the film was rather funny..it is recorded in History what happened after the capture of the city, how many were enslaved and tortured..Mehmed II did indeed offer freedom to Christians, but there is no word in the film about the impaled and tortured Christians, or the fact that the Emperor's head was put in the Hippodrome.. Generally, my rating is 6/10 for the effort and some quite good fight scenes.

3 / 10

Historically inaccurate, but more importantly bad as a movie

I will not go into how the movie is historically accurate (it's simply inaccurate), how it favors Turks and hides their devils (though one should think how could balkan nations manage to preserve their religion, language and culture under Ottoman ruling for 2-4 centuries while all British and French colonies lost all in a century before commenting on this topic), how Vatican was portraited as selfish (I haven't heard anything about their conditioned support until this movie).

My main disappointment is the movie itself. Though its budget is quite high for any Turkish movie, it's not on par with Hollywood productions. So, I didn't expect Hollywood quality special effects and I'm not disappointed in this regard. They are cheap, though not cheapest, compared to Hollywood. But I think that's all can be done within its budget. So it doesn't bother me.

My concerns are about things that has nothing to do with the budget. I don't know if it's due to script or directing but storytelling is awful. The story jumps from here to there and back so suddenly. It's like watching sketches joined as a movie. Also I don't understand why Arabic people talk in Arabic but Byzantians and Italians talk in Turkish.

And there is no character development. Why Giovanni Giustiniani is bad? He behaved kindly to Era. We haven't seen him acting badly to his men. And bam, he became evil. When I think objectively, I see a thoughtful man who is doing his job very good (just how a respected commander should be). So they should fight as respectful rivals at the end. If the director wanted us to hate him, then he should have portraited him as an evil. And why Era developed a sudden feeling of revenge? As an adopted Muslim, she spent all her life with Christians (except her childhood) and she hasn't shown any dislike to the community she's been in. She's just like an happy Christian. Also, the foreseen one, Mehmet The Conqueror is portraited as a man obsessed with taking Istanbul. He should have been a wise and intelligent commander. But when everything goes bad, he begins to shout and insult his men. This is the behaviour we see from cruel kings in Hollywood productions. It's not the behaviour the hero should have. He should not lose his temper, he should have been patient (Look at Saladdin in Kingdom of Heaven while his attacks become ineffective). And his motive should not simply be based on Hz. Mohammed's word. There should be other reasons (for example ongoing threat to Ottomans, etc) for the need to take Istanbul and the prophet's word should have been shown just before the end credits.

There are many illogical things (scriptwise). One of them is: Ottoman tunnel diggers has been digging tunnels for 2 days and they are still outside the citywalls. But when Byzantines become aware of them, they also dig tunnels but they reach them (which is outside the city walls) in almost ten minutes? Byzantine soldiers digging faster than digging specialists?

For cinematography, I won't say anything. It's just not good.

Overall, it's a miss. It has the potential but not because of limited budget but bad script and directing, the movie wasted his chance.

PS: Some will say "Do not overcriticize your country's work". But as I said, I have nothing to say against technical aspects, it's one of the best when considered within its budget, but scripting and directing has nothing to do with budget and these are the ones that make this movie bad. Nothing else.

3 / 10

Exaggeration and Sublimation of Ottoman History

Almost everything in the movie, is very blown up: Costumes, characters, places... Not everything fits to what really happened back then, nor does it have to. But that doesn't mean that the director has the right to irritatingly twist history in favor of conservatives in Turkey.

He falsely presents Emperor Mehmet II as a superhero that makes almost no mistakes, and as a monogamous person. Of course, the facts that he was a wine drinker, a lover of ancient Greek and Roman arts, that he let the city to be sacked for two days, he hanged one of his viziers, and killed all his brothers and made a law that allows and suggests his successors to kill their brothers "for continuation of the state", were all ignored! And we see "the enemies" always speak with a sneaky voice which shows that they're the coward and evil guys. Byzantine Emperor has a weird "digital palace" that has numberless columns, and lives in corruption. War scenes and military costumes are so unrealistic, as well... The list goes on.

Shortly, what I saw was a religious, peasant point of view and a foolish sublimation of Ottoman history. That's what happens with big budget and very limited mentality.

1 / 10

Waste of time

As someone said before "I am sorry but 12 year old kids and illiterate people may find this movie great but in reality this actually had a great potential but is totally failed the great opportunity..." Im great fan of history and i was waiting for opportunity to watch this perspectively awesome movie, but ... I've just wasted 2h30m of my time.

1. Those two Ottoman spies - really? I think director watched too much of James Bond series. They just like two superheroes who could defeat whole army. Really stupid move. 2. Much more fantasy then history. Nothing to add. 3. Absolutely Turkish -not for foreigners eyes. I guess director find out who were those lost people of Atlantis - definitely Ottoman people. 4. Why Romans (Byzantines) shown as inbred imbeciles? Sad move by director.

7 / 10

Good film but with big historic mistakes

It is absolutely clear that the conquest of Constantinople was a great victory for the Ottamans who finished what the crusaders started in 1204. BUT. We must respect history and the director of the film did non respect history at all. During the siege, Constantinople had nothing to do with the glorious city of the past. Only 40.000 of once 1.000.000 people lived inside the walls which were defended only by 7.000 soldiers. 2.000 of them were foreigners. The Ottomans had an army of about minimum 100.000 soldiers. Some say that the army had 200.000 or more soldiers. The Byzantine empire was found at that time at the lowest level of her past glory and in the absolute decline. It is know to everybody who knows only a few things about history that the Ottomans entered the city though an unguarded small gate known as Kerkoporta which has been left open by mistake. This gives a picture of history as it really happened and nobody can argue about that.Because it is history! The Byzantine empire had come to an end as it happens in all the empires in history. There is no place here to talk about more historic facts. I understand that the film maker wanted to give to Mohamed the part of the glory that he deserves. But the end of the film it is absolutely ridiculous and was made only for propaganda reasons. People who study history knows very well what happened at that days when a city was conquered. Massacres. That happened in Constantinople as well. The director the only thing that he does not tell us is that Mohamed gave candies to children! The conquest is without doubt a great achievement of the Ottomans. It helped them built their empire. The dominated east for about 500 years. But without of course knowing Mohamed gave west a great gift as after the fall of the city all the great men escaped to the west and they helped Renaissance to begin. The film is not bad at all and in my opinion is by far better than Hollywood films of that kind. The Turks are making a great effort to raise their country and are to be praised for this.Since i visited Constantinople a few times i can say that progress is visible in Turkey. Hope that in the future they will make again films like this and even better. But please respect history. History can not change because some people want to do propaganda thank you