Genghis Khan (2004) poster
7.3
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 18 users
# of Watchers: 66
Reviews: 1 user
Ranked #86251
Popularity #99999
Watchers 18

This drama is about the life and battles of the historical warrior Genghis Khan. Edit Translation

  • English
  • magyar / magyar nyelv
  • dansk
  • Norsk
  • Country: China
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 30
  • Aired: Jun 17, 2004 - Dec 31, 2004
  • Original Network: CCTV
  • Duration: 45 min.
  • Score: 7.3 (scored by 18 users)
  • Ranked: #86251
  • Popularity: #99999
  • Content Rating: Not Yet Rated

Cast & Credits

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Genghis Khan (2004) photo

Reviews

Dropped 11/30
Moloch1994
0 people found this review helpful
Dec 24, 2021
11 of 30 episodes seen
Dropped 0
Overall 5.5
Story 5.0
Acting/Cast 6.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 1.0

Squandered potential

I've always thought the life story of Genghis Khan deserves a good cinematic adaptation, but it always fails to get one. Ask yourself: what is the one thing that Genghis Khan is known for? Yes, conquering more land than any other single ruler in history. And yet every movie adaptation that I've seen would show his origin story and then end before the most interesting part starts: the actual conquests outside of Mongolia. I ventured into this TV show, thinking that maybe this time things will be different, because while it is difficult to fit all these conquests into a movie, it shouldn't be a problem with a TV series, right? Not to mention you have all this space to explore the complexities of characters and really flesh them out.

Well, this show was disappointing in almost every regard. I watched 11 episodes, and within all that time we're still in Mongolia, dealing with local tribes. Why? China had already made a movie about Genghis Khan (called, you guessed it, Genghis Khan) in 1998. It manages to tell the same story within 2 hours and make it more exciting and emotional. Why do we have to spend 11 episodes (or roughly 8 hours) on it?

But you know what? That wouldn't be the problem, if the story was interesting. And there's a lot of potential for that. Such a fragmented and tribal environment must contain a lot of diplomacy, scheming, betrayals, wars, etc. The story of one clan taking over every other clan can be done at the level of The Godfather. With such a controversial figure as Genghis Khan, you can make a show rivaling The Sopranos in terms of character depth. Instead this series isn't even worth mentioning in the same sentence as those masterpieces.

Characters have no complexity whatsoever. I remember Alan Moore making fun of Stan Lee's early characters, saying they would only have one character trait, something like a bad leg. Guess what? There isn't a single character in this show with a bad leg. What I mean by that is they have no traits whatsoever. They're usually characterized by either being good or bad. Sometimes they change from good to bad, or from bad to good. Genghis Khan is especially glorified. In history he was a cruel leader, who nevertheless achieved a lot of great feats. Here he's not cruel at all. In fact, he might just be the most level-headed character. Not any different from any other generic ruler you've seen a thousand times in every other show.

The way the show is filmed is also a huge problem. It honestly looks very cheap, like it was made with very little budget. Perhaps it was. And the continent-spanning adventure of Genghis Khan is really the last story you should skimp out on. But even with little budget, you can make it work. For example, if you don't have good costumes or sets, try to use lighting and shadows to your advantage. Obscure the details you don't want people to see, and show those you do want them to see. Plant the seeds in the minds of the audience, that their imagination will help to grow. This show doesn't do that. Also, there's the right way and the wrong way of filming the steppes. The right way is to take a lot of static and wide shots, showing the expanse of the grassland under the heaven. I've seen beautiful steppes. I've also seen beautiful movies about the steppes (including about Mongolia). This can be done. Well, the wrong way to film the steppes is the way it's done in this show. To summarize my thoughts on how this show looks: it resembles a LARP filmed in a back yard or at a golf club, thus completely failing to recreate the feel of the setting.

If I had to describe this show with one word, it would be: boring. Unlike the issues I had with Queen Dugu, which was annoying to watch, this show doesn't really generate much of any emotion. Which is the lesser of two evils, as far as I'm concerned. But I really can find no compelling reason to keep watching it. Such a shame, because this series clearly had a lot of potential.

The music was great though! It's a shame it's wasted on such a mediocre show. If anyone knows where I can get the soundtrack, please DM me.

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Details

  • Drama: Genghis Khan
  • Country: China
  • Episodes: 30
  • Aired: Jun 17, 2004 - Dec 31, 2004
  • Original Network: CCTV
  • Duration: 45 min.
  • Content Rating: Not Yet Rated

Statistics

  • Score: 7.3 (scored by 18 users)
  • Ranked: #86251
  • Popularity: #99999
  • Watchers: 66

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