An epic that details the checkered rise and fall of French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte (Joaquin Phoenix) and his relentless journey to power through the prism of his addictive, volatile relationship with his wife, Josephine (Vanessa Kirby) (IMDB).

The detailed and graphic war scenes are not suitable for younger kids. We see an intense and intimate look into the rise and fall of Napoleon, and director Ridley Scott gets this one right. Creating this film in an authentic setting adds to its splendor because it is a visually stunning film, Scott’s strong suit. He is also great at making historically accurate films compared to other directors. Everything I saw in this film is what I remembered learning about Napoleon while watching other documentaries over the years. It even reminded me of a few details I had forgotten.

Phoenix’s portrayal of Napoleon is a stroke of genius because he is absolute perfection in this role. He is understated but powerful because this role requires a depth of emotions. We see him transform from a humble man who wants what is best for France to a maniacal, power-hungry tyrant. This film is not for the faint of heart because of the gory war scenes. It is fascinating to watch the transformation, and it is hard to believe how many soldiers were lost in his campaign to keep power.

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