Smellin' of Troy
What follows is a partial list of discrepancies between "Troy the Big-Budget Hollywood Movie" and "Troy the Epic Poem and Archeological History".

This list was provided by Dr. James Holoka, Professor Foreign Languages and History at Eastern Michigan University, who notes that (despite this list) he "did enjoy the movie nonetheless. Pitt was a fine Achilles. And Homer would have loved the combat scenes (though the Iliad itself is a lot gorier)."

  Big Ticket Items:
The war took ten years, not seventeen days
Achilles was dead by the time the Horse was built and deployed
Menelaus wasn’t killed by Hektor
Menelaus got Helen in the end (Telemachus, Odysseus’ son, visits them in Sparta in Book 4 of the Odyssey, ten years after the war)
Agamemnon was killed by his wife, Clytemnestra, back in Greece, immediately after the war
Aias (Ajax) was not killed by Hektor; he committed suicide when not given the armor of Achilles after Achilles’ death
Paris died at Troy (of an arrow wound, appropriately)
Andromache, Hektor’s wife, was captured and enslaved
Baby Astyanax, Hektor’s son, was tossed off the walls after having his brains bashed out by Odysseus
Patroklos was older, not younger than Achilles and was not his cousin
Briseis was from Lyrnessos, not Troy, and was neither a priestess of any kind nor the cousin of Hektor
 
  Minor Details:
Spelling error: It was “Phthia,” not “Phtia” (on the opening map) that Achilles came from
Menelaus was out of town when Helen ran off with Paris
Hektor never went to Sparta
Achilles’ mother, Thetis, was a sea-goddess
Coins could not have been placed on corpses’ eyes, because coins didn’t get invented till five or six centuries later
Homer’s heroes fought mostly with spears, not swords
The style of ships in the film is anachronistic by six or seven centuries
The style of helmet of Achilles and others is anachronistic by five centuries or so
The statuary throughout Troy is anachronistic by five centuries or complete fantasy (like the giant seated figure in Priam’s throne room)
The columns tapering downward are Minoan (Cretan), not Trojan
Achilles predeceased his father, Peleus, whom Priam refers to as dead
Helen had a daughter by Menelaus before the war
Both population and physical size of Troy are off by a factor of ten in the film
The main gate of Troy had to be partially dismantled for the Horse to fit through
The Greeks feigned sailing away and parked around the other side of a nearby island (no lone rider along the shore could have seen the ships)
Achilles’ Myrmidons did not leave early
Achilles’ son, Neoptolemos, not Achilles himself, participated in the final sack of Troy
The lower city of Troy was protected by a deep trench, not a fifty-foot high wall
Neither Agamemnon nor anyone else, till Alexander the Great, unified all of Greece
A big river (the Scamander) ran through the plain in front of Troy
Achilles killed twelve Trojans at Patroklos’s funeral to burn along with his corpse
Aeneas, whom Paris meets entering the tunnel at the end, was not a kid, but a warrior who had fought Achilles on the battlefield
Hektor lost his nerve and ran from Achilles (all the way round the city three times), before facing him for the final shootout
Helen took up with another Trojan, Deiphobus, after the death of Paris
 
  Troy Links:
Troy's Fallen! Archaeology magazine
How do all the Troy productions stack up? Archaeology magazine gets down (way down) to the details.
Movie Review by Roger Ebert
"Troy is based on the epic poem The Iliad by Homer, according to the credits. Homer's estate should sue."
Official Warner Bros. Movie Website
Flash required (of course)
Real and virtual Troy
MSNBC.com article

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