The epic adventure movie Apocalypto was produced and directed by Mel Gibson and released in the year 2006. This story depicted the journey of a tribesman who had escaped from the cruel ritual of human sacrifice and rescued his family from the destruction of the village that had been captured. The film tells about the downfall of the Mayan civilization and the story of Jaguar Paw who lived I a small village that was attacked by a group of hunters from the neighboring metropolis who were looking out for people as volunteers for the dangerous game of human sacrificing which were performed as rituals by the city’s leaders to keep their masses entertained. The movie was a muscular action movie along with a drama of revenge and recue with little relation to its historical setting. All the dialogues of this movie were in the different Mayan dialects (Reed Johnson (2005). The basic setting of the movie is in Central America which was before the arrival of the Spanish people when according to Mr. Gibson the Mayan empire was already gradually collapsing from the inside. There were many multiple economic, historical and environmental reasons for this fall of the Mayan empire such as there was heavy deforestation due to bad droughts and their lands were no longer producing the food they needed to survive. The population was also increasing and there was no enough space and food available to them.
Apocalypto is the most powerful film of all time where there are strong positive messages portrayed and also sets high standards as a inspiring and iconic way of warning against the abuse and power of the government that cinema has ever seen. In history the declining empire assumes the role of a murdering and brutal way to dominate the people. The movie is a very good example of history which uses to reveal the universal truth. The film also gives the details the horrors and has seized the reigns of control and terrorizes populations (Andrew O'Hehir (2006). It also highlights the process of leading and targeting the warriors of the enemy tribe who are the main volunteers for torture and human sacrifice. This was done in the belief of the attempt to please the gods by giving the most brutal sacrifice. This human sacrifice is a fundamental factor of all the dictatorships in history. These types of rituals were also practiced earlier in ancient Greece, Germany and Asia. The Mayan civilization treated this as a normal function of society and thought that anyone who went against it was insane or abnormal, such was the belief. It was taught earlier in history that the decline in cultures always ended in human sacrifices as they would result in the degradation and depravity of the masses. Therefore Apocalypto also communicates many positive aspects which bring a feeling of comfort to the individual which also includes the fear of being in sickness and rejection which could be related to the society of today who use a method of control and brainwashing of the state. The film also immerses in the atmosphere that is able to suspend the disbelief and make u really imagine that you are in Mesoamerica. Also in addition Mr. Gibson also could have revealed the true nature of the Mayan culture which involved the rituals of sacrifice of children and Cannibalism as they were the two frights and dangers that happened in Mesoamerica.
Apocalypto has achieved a great impact to teach the philosophy o9f courage and perseverance which is the highlight of the film. But however, Gibson stated that he wanted the film to have a positive response and defined the title as the beginning of an unveiling revelation because he felt that at the beginning or at the end all the civilizations have operated in the same manner. Hence he was already being a subject of criticism for depicting the true nature of the brutal culture of the Mayan civilization. They were many who argued that the message of the film was merely used to exploit the false assertions that women were not involved in the sacrificial rituals. The brutal portray of the Mayan culture as an offensive and racist is expected only from the relativists who are absent from the factual evidence of Gibson’s depiction. The bounding of small babies every morning and sacrificing them to the various Gods was considered wrong at that time and also is considered the same in today’s time (Robert W. Welkos (2006). Therefore history depicts that the most dangerous force is always the government and the crime that it is surrounded with. This same methodology is seen to be practiced and controlled by the Mayan tribes thousands of years ago. Hence the movie Apocalypto defines this message and also shows its power to obtain that it is the most powerful and important film of this generation and also of all time.
"Apocalypto". British Board of Film Classification. Retrieved January 29, 2012.
Andrew O'Hehir, "Apocalypto" Salon.com, December 8, 2006, Retrieved January 14, 2011.
"Mel Gibson criticizes Iraq war at film fest – Troubled filmmaker draws parallels to collapsing Mayan civilization". Associated Press. September 25, 2006.
Maya Civilization. Microsoft Encarta Online Encyclopedia 2008. Archived from the original on October 31, 2009.
Robert W. Welkos (December 9, 2006). "In Apocalypto,fact and fiction play hide and seek". Los Angeles Times.
Reed Johnson (October 29, 2005). "Mel Gibson's latest passion: Maya culture". Los Angeles Times