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Bettie's Box Office: Pompeii Review

Updated: Thursday, February 20 2014, 05:00 PM CST

Pompeii is one of the world's great disasters, and it's now a movie about a volcano. Just like Titanic was basically Romeo & Juliet until the ship sinks, Pompeii is Gladiator until the mountain blows up. 

How's this for an original storyline? A little boy's family is slaughtered by the Romans, so he's taken as a slave until he can fight in the arena for their amusement. Right before his big fight, though, he falls in love with the daughter of a Roman aristocrat. Meanwhile, Mount Vesuvius steams and bubbles. 

The casting is all over the place. Kit Harington (Jon Snow from Game of Thrones) is a young Orlando Bloom. He's nice to look at but, despite his muscular shoulders, he can't carry the role of leading man. 

The best casting is Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Atticus, toughest of the gladiators. 

The worst casting is Kiefer Sutherland as the corrupt Roman senator Corvus, who is also after the aristocrat's daughter. 

There's not much good 3D until Vesuvius erupts, which couldn't come soon enough for me. The lava and a few fiery sparks seem to burst from the screen right into your tub of popcorn. The effects are truly spectacular but, at this point, you might not care who the fireballs hit. 

I'd like to rate Pompeii as a blast at the theater, but it's more of a pop on DVD. 

Pompeii opens on February 21and is rated PG-13 for intense battle sequences, disaster-related action and brief sexual content.

Bettie's Box Office: Pompeii Review

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