Game of Thrones – A Song of Ice and Fire (2011) Epic Fantasy Starring Sean Bean

“Winter is coming. There is a war coming.”

I’m not going to bore you with any justification why I included Game of Thrones in my war movie blog. There are a few good explanations other than that I LOVE this series. I’m a sucker for epic fantasy, it’s my favourite guilty pleasure. Although compared to Lord of the Rings, this series has elements of Braveheart, King Arthur, 300, RomeCenturion and Gladiator. Game of Thrones is a large-scale genre blend that is like nothing I have ever seen on TV before.

I have just watched the first episodes and really love it. I haven’t read the books by George R. R. Martin yet (we are talking 3000+ pages) but I’m seriously tempted before watching more of the series.

The series starts with a scene in a snow-covered forest. A small group of men, the Night Watch,  encounters something unspeakable. Most of them will not survive the encounter. The only survivor is brought before Lord Stark (Sean Bean). The explanation he gives for what spurred his cowardly escape is strange, he says to have seen an ancient evil that hasn’t been lurking in the forest for 2000 years. Since he is not believed, he is sentenced.

Lord Stark is the master of Winterfell. The Starks are only one influential family in the divided world of Westeros. Intrigues and fights for the throne are constant, no family can trust an other one and even inside of one family there may be traitors. Winterfell lies in the North, King’s Landing, where King Baratheos reigns, lies in the South. Border between the North and the wild that outstretches far beyond the horizon is the Wall, a barrier made out of pure ice. The Night Watch is in charge of guarding the Wall. Being sent to the Wall is a questionable honor. The most able fighters are dispatched together with convicts, orphans and other outcasts.

In the first series we are introduced to four different families and the story moves between them. This is all quite fascinating and there are some interesting and complex characters to be discovered. What makes for an especially intense atmosphere is the threat of war and winter. This is a world in which seasons follow another rhythm than in ours. Winter can last longer than three years or not come at all for decades. It can be intense or light but it always brings unspeakable things, unrest and war. At the beginning of the series all the wise old men and women whisper to one another, they say that winter is coming and that it will be long and awful.

Do you like Lord of the Rings? Did you like Rome, King Arthur, 300 and Centurion? Are you a Sean Bean fan? Do you consider epic fantasy and action movies to be worthy of your attention? If so, I guess that you have to watch this stunning new HBO series.

Last but not least, this isn’t a series for prudish people. The episodes showing the Dothraki people and their wild ways and interactions with their women includes quite a bit of nudity.

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15 thoughts on “Game of Thrones – A Song of Ice and Fire (2011) Epic Fantasy Starring Sean Bean

  1. the war movie buff says:

    We’re on the same page on this one. The series is mesmerizing. HBO has done some wonderful series in the last few years. The acting is amazing and you have villains that you can not wait to see get killed. There is quite a bit of sex, but that is HBOs style. I just pray it does not get silly like True Blood has. By the way, it helps to go to the web site to keep track of who is who.

    P.S. I can’t tell if you have gotten to the shocker yet. I would love to hear your opinion on it.

    • Don’t tell yet! I have only watched the first three parts so far. It is typical HBO style. I thought it was important to add the bit about the nudity as Lord of the Ring fans would maybe be taken aback.
      I so agree about the villains. There are the ones you immediately hate and others you like.
      Who is your favourite and least favourite character?

      • the war movie buff says:

        I love the little guy (sorry there are a lot names) and I guess I’m not the only one because he was nominated for an Emmy. I particularly can’t stand the king’s son. You’ll find out why.

      • He is acting well but I don’t like the character. The king’s son is horrible… I saw the episode with the wolf and and am sure there is worse to come.

  2. Guy Savage says:

    I haven’t read the books either, but I’ll be watching this one.

    BTW, I have a film suggestion if you haven’t seen it: A Self-made Hero. Rewatched it the other day and thought about you.

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  4. Curvy Kitty says:

    If it’s got swords in it then I’m in. Though I fear it will make me blush!

  5. Novroz says:

    Great review, Caroline….and I am officially hating you, just kidding 😉 actually I envy you. I have been eager to see this since months ago and yet still unable to see it. still waiting for the DVD to show up.

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