New Release: Sword of War DVD

A large-scale historical action-drama movie from Italy, Sword of War, starring Rutger Hauer (The Hitcher), arrived on DVD on Feb. 22, 2011, from Lionsgate.

The independent film chronicles the story of the 12th Century’s German Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa and his mission to conquer all Italian enemies and restore the Empire to the position it had occupied under Charlemagne and Otto I the Great. Barbarossa’s lengthy campaign ultimately met with defeat at the decisive Battle of Legnano against an army of 900 men known as the Company of Death, which was led by a young general from Milan, Alberto da Giussana (Raz Degan).

Though not nearly as well known on these shores as other tales of European conquests, Sword of War’s story is no less fascinating and, if we’re to accept what’s depicted in the film, violent.

Directed by Renzo Martinelli (The Stone Merchant) and originally entitled Barbarossa, the film also stars Kasia Smutniak (From Paris With Love) and F. Murray Abraham (Language of the Enemy).

The sole bonus feature on the Sword of War disc is a making-of featurette.

The DVD carries a list price of $26.98.


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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.