Édgar Ramírez, seen earlier this year as a priest fighting demons in Deliver Us From Evil, reaches epic heights as Simón Bolívar in The Liberator. Chronicling the evolution of the South American icon was certainly a daunting task for filmmaker Alberto Arvelo, and though the director mounts various Bolívar campaigns to visually arresting affect, much of The Liberator’s success rests with Ramírez’s inspired performance.
We are introduced to Bolívar as a Venezuelan who’s born into privilege, and his youthful confidence is tempered by his insightful beliefs on equality and social justice, lessons imparted by his tutor Simon Rodriguez (Francisco Denis). After his marriage (a luminous Maria Valverde plays his wife) ends in tragedy, Bolívar is initially disillusioned and directionless, until he leads a campaign to liberate northern South America.
Simon Bolívar is a near mythic figure, and having been known as fighting over 100 battles against the Spanish Empire and riding over 70,000 miles on horseback, it’s easy to see why Arvelo infuses The Liberator with grand scale storytelling (Gustavo Dudamel’s sweeping and resonant score adds to the mix).
But amidst the battles and Bolívar’s speeches, the film’s biggest takeaway is Ramírez, who effectively portrays the inner struggles that reside within this iconic figure. Ramírez knows that before one portrays a legend, he must play the actual man (Bolívar died of tuberculosis at 47).
Filmed in Spain and Venezuela, The Liberator is also pleasing to the eye, as Arvelo and crew get the most out of the project’s reported $50 million budget. Now playing in limited release, The Liberator (119 minutes, R) is a narrative that should be seen on the big screen, especially if you love historical epics.
**In the audio clip below, Ramírez explains how Simón Bolívar’s personal loss inspired his lifelong quest for freedom and liberty:
Deliver Us From Evil, the horror-thriller headlined by Eric Bana, comes out on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD October 28 via Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The story is inspired by former NYPD officer Ralph Sarchie’s (Bana) experiences with the paranormal in the streets of New York. Edgar Ramirez (Zero Dark Thirty) is the priest who helps Sarchie combat this unspeakable evil, with Joel McHale also starring as Sarchie’s NYPD partner.
Special features on both the Blu-ray and DVD include: director’s commentary and the featurette “Illuminating Evil: Making Deliver Us From Evil.” The featurette takes an in-depth look at writer/director Scott Derrickson’s step by step process in getting the project to the silver screen (the movie is based on the book penned by Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool).
Blu-ray exclusive bonus features include:
Deliver us From Evil – How the production created the demonic presence that’s featured in the film.
The Two Sergeants – A look at the real life Ralph Sarchie and actor Eric Bana.
The Demon Detective – An interview with Ralph Sarchie, who discusses his faith and his entryway to demonology.
You may remember Olivia Munn from her popular run on TV’s Attack of the Show!or maybe you’ve watched her as the neurotic (and highly intelligent) Sloan Sabbith on HBO’s underrated series The Newsroom.Either way, you probably haven’t seen Munn in an acting class.
That’s not a knock on or a sarcastic dig at the actress, and her steady work on television (including the short-lived Perfect Couples) and film (Magic Mike, The Babymakers, and now Deliver Us From Evil) is proof that she’s in-demand and, more importantly, able to successfully work in both mediums.
During the Deliver Us From Evil press day over the weekend, Munn explained why spending years honing her craft at acting school wasn’t in her cards. Instead, the actress has an entirely different and straightforward approach to her craft. “I am a part of all that I have met,” asserts Alfred Lord Tennyson in his poem Ulysses. One can assume Munn shares a similar sentiment.
In the audio clip below, Olivia Munn explains how connecting to people from all walks of life illuminates her acting path.
In Deliver Us From Evil, Munn plays the wife of Ralph Sarchie (EricBana), an NYPD sergeant who battles a different kind of evil in the Bronx. Directed by Scott Derrickson (The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Sinister), is based on the book of the same name (penned by Sarchie and Lisa Collier Cool) and opens nationwide July 2.