Against my better judgment, I went out to catch a matinée showing of 10,000 BC yesterday, and the only good thing that came of the outing was that I found a $20 bill in the parking lot. The movie is one of the stinkiest pieces of movie cheese I’ve encountered. At least Dragon Wars was so bad it was funny; 10,000 BC was trite and boring.
There was one mistake present throughout much of the film that continually made me chuckle though. The super-sized mammoths (Mammuthus primigenius) in the film were twice incited to charge, and rather than run like modern elephants do, they galloped like horses. Clips of the film haven’t surfaced yet, but if you look closely at the shots of the mammoths in the latter part of the official trailer you can see what I mean;
Both modern African and Indian elephants (Loxodonta africana and Elephas maximus, respectively) cannot gallop in such a fashion as they are far too-large to do see. They can move very quickly (as anyone unfortunate enough to be chased by an angry elephant knows), but when they run it is much more like a shuffle than the stotting of a gazelle. Here’s a video an an African elephant running;
Indian elephants run in the same fashion;
The mammoths in the film were beautifully rendered (much more so than the terror birds and sabercat, which seemed fuzzy and out of focus), but I still couldn’t help but think that they were imbued with magic powers that helped them escape the constraints of scaling. My advice to you, if you really must see a film in which ancient humans and prehistoric creatures co-exist, is to go rent One Million Years B.C. Sure, it’s more inaccurate, but at least it’s a fun movie!