Sunday, 20 September 2020
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
Monday, 31 May 2010 10:57

Prince of Persia: The Sands of TimeWanted: American actor to play Middle Eastern prince with British accent. Duties include playing with plastic swords, looking dashing in Indian cotton shirts and letting your hair blow across your face “just so”. Cute puppy-dog eyes are considered an asset.

Jake Gyllenhaal fits this job description nicely in Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Although the British accent leaves something to be desired, his new perfectly ripped physique makes him highly employable as an action star. But is this enough to fill the plot holes and story gaps in a movie version of the platform video game? Ummm... Unfortunately not.

Jake Gyllenhaal: Packing on the muscleGyllenhaal plays Dastan, a prince who came from humble beginnings as a street urchin. His courage and kindness toward another boy impresses the King so much that he adopts Dastan and raises him as his own - no word on what became of the other kid who probably wasn’t nearly so lucky! Dastan grows up strong (and super-buff) and is clearly the brains and heart behind his two older brothers. When their father is murdered he is framed as the assassin, but he (and the audience) figures out pretty quickly who the real culprit is. The King’s brother Nizam is not only bald with some evil goatee-moustache-facial-hair-thing going on, but he’s also played by Ben Kingsley – a sure sign of villainy!

Gyllenhaal and ArtertonDastan joins forces with a beautiful princess (Gemma Arterton) whose tongue is predictably sharper than her sword. Her job is to protect a magical dagger that can reverse time by pressing a button on the top and releasing some of the sand inside. Mix all this together and you’ve got a recipe for... actually a recipe for a good nap sounds about right.

Prince of Persia has the budget and the star power, but it is lacking creativity and joy. It’s methodical, predictable and formulaic.


Directed by Mike Newell and starring Jake Gyllenhaal

Alanis Morissette wrote the films theme song “I Remain”.

Both Prince of Persia and Sex and the City 2 were filmed in Morocco.