The sacrifice scene was quite a spectacle as the hearts were cut from the living victims, then their decapitated heads bounced down the long flight of pryamid steps to be caught by football like guys with huge nets as the crowd roared. Then the eclipse. The high priests were laughing at the ignorance of the people during the eclipse. All the bodies were sacrificed to the sun god who was finally appeased at the eclipse and the priest just flippantly let the other sacrificial victims go. Rather go to their doom and only our hero Jaguar Paw escapes, and escapes , and escapes, and escapes, and escapes, and...get the picture? It would give Indiana Jones a heart attack.
Not a few cutural anthopologists are pissed at Gibsons portrayal of the Mayans. Pissed because he didn't show their great advances in art, architecture, agriculture etc but instead showed them as heart ripping demons living in festering cities and off the lives of innocents. None of them appreciated the Conquistadors ship landing at the end either. But I don't think Gibson did either as he has his hero NOT go out to meet them but rather retreat into the forest.
I saw it with my wife and my New Age sister-in-law who literally booed out loud at the landing of the Conquistadors.
Anyhow, Gibson, at a private screening said the whole thing was a parabolic story of modern America, and the war in Iraq. I had heard this before seeing the movie. And they ARE there. Especially how Jaguar Paw turns the tables on those who invaded his village.
It is a pure adrenaline movie with a message. I give it 4 out of 4 stars.