Review: There Be Dragons

First and foremost, you should know there are no dragons in There Be Dragons. Of course we can’t take every title literally, but when you’ve got one that pronounces a particular beast will exist, you either must deliver or provide a valid explanation for the name. Again, There Be Dragons features no dragons, merely a weak reasoning of the title and just about everything else that happens in the film for that matter.

Inspired by true events, There Be Dragons focuses on childhood friends Josemaría Escrivá (Charlie Cox) and Manolo Torres (Wes Bentley). While both boys wind up attending the same seminary, from there, they go on entirely divergent paths, Manolo working as a spy in the Spanish Civil War and Josemaría becoming a priest and fighting to keep the faith in even the most violent times. When Josemaría is left with no choice but to abandon Madrid and flee to safety so he may see his vision of Opus Dei to fruition, Torres remains on the battlefield where he develops a dangerous obsession with a Hungarian radical named Ildiko (Olga Kurylenko).

Their tale is told through the research of Manolo’s very own son, Robert (Dougary Scott). Robert’s writing a book about Josemaría and naturally, his primary source is his father. Initially the now old and ailing Manolo refuses to unearth the haunting memories, but once Robert opens the floodgates, his father has no choice but to confront the past so he may finally be forgiven.

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