Have you seen the 2004 movie Alexander? You wouldn’t be alone in having missed this one. The movie follows the historic Alexander, King of Macedonia, and all-around big deal. Alexander the Great conquered a lot of the world and is typically referenced as one of the greatest leaders in warfare history. That should be a movie everyone catches. However, at the time, we also saw the release of Gladiator with Russell Crowe and Troy. Alexander was greatly disliked by critics and went nowhere at the box office. This was despite a cast that includes Angelina Jolie, Colin Farrell, Anthony Hopkins, and Val Kilmer. While this may sound like a movie you can skip, the director and writer, Oliver Stone, was passionate about the project. Today, we have a new Ultimate version of this movie on Netflix. According to many, this is a version worth your time and attention.
When you decide to watch this overlooked Angelina Jolie movie, you want to find Alexander: The Ultimate Cut. This isn’t just a second take on this movie.
The original theatrical cut was released in 2004. Then, in 2005, Oliver Stone released a “Director’s Cut” for the DVD. This version had deleted 25 minutes of footage and then went on to add in 17 minutes of previously unseen scenes. This took the movie from 175 minutes to 167. While this improved the movie, Oliver Stone still didn’t feel it was good enough. In 2007, he released another version. This was called the “Final Cut”. This version was 214 minutes, with more scenes deleted and added in. On the 10th anniversary of the movie in 2014, we got Alexander: The Ultimate Cut. This movie is now 207 minutes and sees much better reviews than all previous versions. The movie has an intermission, tells the story in a new way, and should likely be ranked differently on lists of Angelina Jolie’s best movies.
While Alexander took a while to get to where it is today, it was definitely a passion project for director Oliver Stone. A week after this movie came out, Colin Farrell made a joke about it being terrible. While mostly directors and actors alike have to live with the fact that sometimes their movies will be loved and sometimes hated, Oliver Stone just couldn’t let this project go. Luckily, over time, that turned out for the better. He had a lot to work with here, especially with the cast he got. Angelina Jolie plays Olympias. Olympias is the mother of Alexander the Great, and we see her nurture him to become the leader he is.
As far as behind-the-scenes gossip goes, Alexander had a touch of fun. While it may be odd since Angelina Jolie played Farrell’s mother in this movie, the pair dated briefly during filming. It was Val Kilmer who got to play Jolie’s husband though. He still talks about how excited he was to kiss her on set.
Angelina Jolie has a varied filmography. We’ve seen her in a wide range of movies. This is one of her rare touches on a historical movie. Lately, she’s been a voice actress in quite a few movies, like Kung Fu Panda and The One and Only Ivan. The year following Alexander saw the release of Mr & Mrs Smith, an action-comedy. We know her for movies like Girl, Interrupted, and now Maleficent.
While she has yet to join the world of superhero movies, that is about to change. She is currently getting ready to play Thena in Eternals for Marvel. With her history of action movies, it may come as no surprise that she’s playing a warrior who can do a lot of kickass stuff. The Eternals are known for having a lot of great abilities in general, like superhuman strength, speed, and healing. Thena is known for being an expert on combat and weaponry throughout human history. Born in ancient Greece, this character is a return to the same part of the world Angelina Jolie’s character in Alexander was from.
Unfortunately, Eternals has been postponed. It’s had a few release dates so far. One of them was February 12, 2021. The latest news suggests we may be able to see Angelina Jolie in Eternals on November 5th, 2021. For now, you can catch up on some of Jolie’s movies you may have missed, like Alexander: The Ultimate Cut on Netflix. If you liked Troy and Gladiator, you’ll want to give this historic film a shot.