The Alamo

You will never forget

Western History War
137 min     5.9     2004     USA


Based on the 1836 standoff between a group of Texan and Tejano men, led by Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie, and Mexican dictator Santa Anna's forces at the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas.


Peter McGinn wrote:
Welcome to the murky middle ground where legend and history meet. I enjoyed this movie as an earnest attempt to tell this iconic legend in a slightly different way. Its variance from the legend may make cinema purists uncomfortable, but I have read a lot about the Alamo over the past 40 years and don't feel threatened by it. History, after all, is written by the winners. I think the last scene with Davy Crockett is based on a book by a Mexican soldier, but I am not 100% sure. Some historians suggest the battle was begun while everyone slept and was over in minutes. The first best selling biography of David Crockett (his descendants say he never went by Davy, that that was a Walt Disney concept) may have made up some of the legend now accepted as nearly factual. I like the line Billy Bob Thornton as David Crockett gives about the burden of being Crockett, the legendary Crockett, that is, rather than the private Crockett he is not allowed to be. It is just as well that the battle turned out to be such a rallying cry for Sam Houston's army, because it doesn't feel like it accomplished much else. Well, except for providing material for an entertaining movie, that is.
r96sk wrote:
Didn't enjoy this. 'The Alamo', to me at least, is an incredibly slow-paced and rather boring 137 minutes. Not even the free-for-all action sequences bring any true entertainment, due to the chaotic filming nature of them; I get there's supposed to be pandemonium, but the camera work is a mess. Another negative to note is the score, which is one of the poorest I've heard. It's so soppy and full of itself at times it makes it almost unwatchable, though in fairness isn't helped by the direction. I get they were attempting to show the lives of the people involved, but two-second dialogues and dramatic music doesn't attach you to characters. The cast don't do anything majorly wrong, but I couldn't find a connection with any of them. Billy Bob Thornton is probably the best in this, as he portrays Davy Crockett. Dennis Quaid doesn't get enough to work with as Sam Houston, while none of the others standout - not even Emilio Echevarría as Santa Anna. This should be edge-of-your-seat stuff, it isn't - at least for me.