December 18, 2006 12:00 PM

Rudy Youngblood, Raoul Trujillo


Mel Gibson is one twisted puppy. He goes full bore on the gore in Apocalypto, making his earlier efforts at depicting man’s inhumanity to man in his films The Passion of the Christ and Braveheart seem tame. Want to see a knife plunged into the chest of a still-alive man, his heart pulled out and his head cut off? Park yourself right here.

In the waning days of the Mayan empire, a warrior (Youngblood) is captured by invaders. Intent on saving his wife and small son, he must outwit and outrun his cruel captors. Gibson is an accomplished, visceral filmmaker who brings real oomph to the violent scenes, but what possibly could be the point of all this? That it was ever thus? That mighty civilizations are bound to fall? I’m not sure that’s justification enough for requiring viewers to bring a barf bag to the theater. (R)

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