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Parents' Guide to

The Dovekeepers

By Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Stylish, violent Biblical-style tale is told by women.

Movie NR 2015 240 minutes
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If you're a fan of ancient Judaica or faith-based historical dramas, The Dovekeepers has enough to keep you interested, if not wholly entertained. The series, produced by The Bible creators Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, offers a dramatic interpretation of the historical events surrounding the siege of Masada in 73 C.E., during which time the Sicariis (a Jewish sect committed to systematically and violently fighting Romans until the death) fled to a remote Judean desert mountain citadel a thousand feet high to avoid the Empire's persecution. The story is told as a series of personal flashbacks, which incorporate narratives of romantic entanglements, the trials of motherhood, and unfulfilled dreams while living under the shadow of probable annihilation.

It's long, theatrical, and hyperstylized to reinforce the mythic nature of the tale, which has become controversial thanks to the alternative interpretations of events offered by historians and religious scholars. As a result, those who are familiar with the story may take issue with the way the outcome is presented. Folks unfamiliar with it may find themselves struggling to understand the events that unfold.

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