Fact & Fiction in the Movie Troy

Roundup: Talking About History

Rachel Browne, in the Australian Sun Herald (May 23, 2004):

DR Blanche Menadier is an honorary research associate at Macquarie University who has excavated at Troy nine times. She gives her verdict on how the film Troy compares with The Iliad.

* Fact: The area believed to be Troy is situated near two rivers, overlooking a fertile plain.

* Fiction: The film Troy was shot in a sandy, barren area of Malta which looks nothing like Turkey's Aegean coast.

* Fact: In Homer's Iliad, the Trojan War takes place over 10 years.

* Fiction: No one ages in the film, and the war seems to wrap up in about three weeks.

* Fact: There is no development of Achilles as a romantic figure in The Iliad. In fact, historians widely agree he had a homosexual relationship with his friend Patroclus.

* Fiction: Brad Pitt's Achilles is depicted as a ladies' man, with a prominent love scene with Rose Byrne's character Briseis. There is no suggestion of a homosexual relationship.

* Fact: While Homer's Iliad does mention the existence of the Trojan horse, it is regarded as a literary device. There is no archaeological evidence to support the existence of a horse.

" Fiction: In the film, the horse plays such a starring role it almost deserves its own credit.

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