Some critics who have seen Napoleon complain that it lasts too long. Nothing is further from reality. Condensing into just 147 minutes the hectic life of the ambitious Corsican soldier who became a consul and was later crowned Emperor of France is a credit to him. And he passes like a breath. So much so that one has the feeling that everything develops too quickly and the film sometimes struggles to breathe. The battle sequences are masterful – one has to take one's hat off to the recreation of the Austerlitz battle – and the chemistry of the soldier with Josefina, who is the great actress Vanessa Kirby, would have needed more space to savor a truly wonderful love story. complex and exciting. That's why it's such a joy that Ridley Scott has revealed the existence of an alternative four-and-a-half-hour montage that still has no destination, although he hopes it will be on Apple TV, the platform where the film will land after its theatrical release.
Napoleon is pure epic, entertainment worth seeing on the big screen. Because of the magnitude of the character played by Joaquin Phoenix in another acting display that could give him his second Oscar. Her defiant gaze, a face eager for conquest, hunger and voracious sex; insecurity in the face of a manipulative mother and a woman who does not give him enough interest and to whom he will return again and again despite publicly disowning her for not giving him an heir... And above all for Scott, because on the verge of turning 86 he is still demonstrating his excellent narrative pulse and an unprecedented capacity for work that would deserve a more than recognized Oscar for best direction. An award that continues to elude the master of Blade Runner or Alien after almost six decades of career.
The Briton has materialized his desire to film the life of Bonaparte, a project that obsessed Kubrick and ended up frustrated and whose testimony Spielberg will now take up in miniseries format. Napoleon fever continues. The only thing missing is that interest in his figure awakens sufficient motivation among the audience as the privateering did with his army before each battle.