User Reviews (19)

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  • gunkanes23 November 2019
    I have studied several Spanish records about the Conquer of Mexico, and this TV show caught me completely off guard. Most of key historical details are faithfully registered, the costumes and catacterization of actors is remarcable. Usually don't like flashbacks on films but in this case they really improved the final version.

    It was so risky trying to bring to TV one of the most important moments in world history. And they did it really nicely.
  • WylieJJordan27 November 2019
    I was impressed by the historical accuracy of 'Hernán' in spite of what I thought were too many flash-backs and flash-forwards. The series presents what I think is a balanced approach to the Conquest (or Invasion) of México. The Spaniards are neither heroes nor villains, but men in search of wealth, and the Mexica (not 'Aztecs', thank God) are neither savages nor victims, but men defending their homes against superior fire power. I particularly liked the appropriate use of the Nahuatl and Mayas languages in addition to Spanish, even though all three must have changed significantly in the last 500 years (about the same period of time that English has evolved from Shakespeare) NOTE: the word 'Aztec' was not used by anyone at the time of the Conquest, but came into use almost 300 years later, ina history of México published in Italy by a Franciscan who had be expelled from México.
  • Very much worth a binge. I watched it in Prime in two 4 episode nights.

    At home, my mother was an avid reader of history and as a High Schooler she made me read the epic book "The True Story of The Conquest of New Spain" by Bernal Díaz del Castillo (2 volumes, written in XVI Century "Castellano", the term Spain hadn't been created yet).

    As far as I know, the Aztec culture, as well as the events leading to the "Noche Triste" (Sad Night, the first defeat of Cortés by the rebellious Mexicas) are very well portrayed. Some parts of the series are made up and romanticized but nevertheless are fitting to the plot. Modern archeology and history scholars have also contributed much to our present day knowledge of the times, that the original Díaz del Castillo obligedly omitted from his much redacted revisions.

    The series as historic entertainment is not only dramatic and gripping but also very much humane. It emphasizes the clash of two cultures with a crudeness that permeates any attempt of smoothing the tension the arrival of Cortés' group created among the nations then populating the area.

    For people not familiar with Mexico's hirtory, it will show how far from "savages" were the people. Human sacrifices was a horrific custom that was accepted by all the nations of Mezzoamerica and in a way not much more shocking than Roman practices of crucifictions, circus and roman candles (tarred Christians set on fire to lit Roman streets). Yet, Romans are considered a great civilization while Aztecs are deemed savages.

    The only reason that kept me from giving it a ten star rating is the casting of the main character, Hernán Cortés. From Bernal Díaz we know he was fair skinned and probably brown haired, as natives thought of him as Quetzalcoatl. Not as nordic as Pedro de Alvarado who was called Tonathiu (the sun) by the Mexica but certainly not as dark as Oscar Jaenada is. We must remember Moors had just been expelled from Southern Spain and Cortés was a Castillian, thus of Celt ancestry. The rest of the cast is perfect and comprised of great actors.

    Script, direction, special effects, sound, acting --even Spanish accent- are all exquisitely delivered.

    I cannot wait for the second season to be delivered.
  • The series try to tell us one of the most dramatic and interesting stories that happened ever in the course of the human history of this planet. The story of the conquest of the New World; of Cortez and Moktesuma! It's useless to say I like the idea behind the movie, not so much the performance, alas. Even older, Apocalypto is stil better, such kind of movie cries for the best possible financing in order for the final result to be satisfying. The task is not easy - recreating a world so totally different from ours, with 99 % of its architecture destroyed, with massive battles involving thousands of participants. And I would like to see them in movie with this plot, not Gandhi! Anyway, the movie is far from bad, worth seeing. And we can thank its creators for the effort!
  • One star for the Mexicans and three others for the fact they speak Spanish, Maya and Nahuatl. Sadly, that's as generous I can be. Who in heaven's sake starts a conquest this epic in the Aztec capital Tenochtitlan?! If there's one thing you can build up to! As entering the capital should be more like the season's final. It soon became clear why they thought they could begin the story in the capital: Flashbacks. Someone seemed to think it would be a very clever idea to use lots of flashbacks. However, these flashbacks bring nothing to the table but are just a way to masquerade the fact that they have no clue how to tell a story. If they can't use flashbacks properly they should just shoot the story in chronological order. About 9 minutes in they commit the capital error nr 1 in filmmaking: "Don't say it, show it". When one of the conquistadors starts whining about some vision he had blablabla. Again it didn't bring anything to the table, it was rather annoying and as I can't stress enough it broke a capital rule in filmmaking. But I guess same with the flashbacks someone thought it would be a great idea to have a character in the story who has a vision of some sort. Nope. It's the main problem with this series: the script. More specifically the poor quality of it. There's just nothing - not one line of dialogue or storyline - that is salvageable if you would start afresh, say if for example you had more budget and you had a second chance to redeem yourself. Actually, they showed so much in just the first episode that they practically told all the different aspects of the real story, the conquest that is. They showed so much I wonder (as I only saw the first episode) what the hell are they going to talk about in the rest of the season? Oooh yeah, I forgot: flashbacks!! I really wanted this to be good but if they knew beforehand that they only have the talent to shoot a telenovela than they should've left the story alone.
  • The show is entertaining and the actors do a good job. However, it is very unrealistic. Native Mexicas are depicted as good-hearted people (like Rousseau's Noble Savage) who accidentally sacrifice and oppress other humans without bad intentions. If you ignore this absurd premise, it is a good show.
  • I really wanted to like this series, but with all of the flashbacks and jumps forward in time, I'm getting seasick. Just tell a story and don't try to be so clever. They make this same mistake in the series El Marginal.

    This playing around with the timeline isn't clever; it's highly annoying and takes away from what could have been a great narrative. They have squandered a big budget and some fine actors by resorting to film school tricks.
  • This history of Hernán Cortés and the early phase of the Conquest (or invasión) of México is told in eight chapters, each focused on one of the people most closely involved: 1. Marina (whom the Mexica called Malina); 2. Cristóbal de Olid; 3. Xicotencatl, Chief of Tlaxcala; 4. Bernal Diaz del Castillo (who later published a first-hand account of the campaign); 5. Emperor Moctezuma; 6. Famously cruel Pedro de Alvarado (whom the Mexica called Tonatiuh 'sun' for his red hair and beard); 7. Gonzalo de Sandoval, the youngest of Cortés Lieutenants; and, finally, 8. Hernán Cortés at the Noche Triste. The change of lead characters in each episode involves considerable flashbacks and flash-forwards, but I found the series highly satisfying.
  • Starting with bad points:
    • They decided to use permanent flashback, there is no beginning, no middle and no end to the story, it is all messed up, unbearable. It is a very poor choice, specially because the history of the conquest was to slowly discover that there was a quasi mythical city in a middle of a continent.
    • It is an amazon production, so they bend history a bit in order to fit their liberal stereotypes (Europeans bad, Christians bad, Muslims good etc ...) but not too much (and these strong women lovers forgot about Maria de Estrada).
    • The production want us to believe that Spaniards massacred thousands of cholulan just for fun ...because "Europeans bad" I guess. The fact is that Cholula was a trap, the Spaniards were about to get massacred so they (over)reacted the way they did. Later on, Alvarado massacre was much more disputable however motivated by his hatred for local tradition (kid sacrifices etc ...).
    • Obviously Cortes never had a muslin girlfriend, and if muslins weren't very popular in Spain, it was because Spaniards just liberated themselves from muslins after 8 centuries of domination (I wish liberal production mentioned that more often but .... "Muslims good" I guess).

    Good points:
    • Except few exceptions mentioned above, they really try to stick to the history even with tiny details. We got more of the point of view of the Conquistadors but there are a lot of fantastic descriptions of the very diverse pre-Columbian societies.

    So it is fantastic to have a fairly accurate visual depiction of what were the fascinating pre-Columbian civilizations and this incredible moment of history. But in order to understand I recommend to study the history of the conquest before watching the show because of the permanent flash back/forward. I would have gave a 10 stars if the history was in order.
  • Very accurate with historic chronicles which has several nuances and diversal point of views. Good for understanding deeper reasons that led to the further fall down of Tenochtitlan.
  • A beautiful series totally vtuined by the frequent change in timeline. It just doesn't let you connect and stay with the storyline. Whoever decided to use this timeline jump is responsible for killing the story.
  • Cortez is one of the most important protagonists in the years of the conquest of the Americas. He is also controversial, considering the religious paradigm and his fidelity to the Spanish crown, amidst all the cruelty of his actions. The production is impeccable and offers the awesome shock of culture between Catholic Europeans and Aztec culture. Very good actors, honest production and consistency to a unique moment in history. If you like history, and a good story telling, do not miss it!
  • alehfc3 December 2019
    I am personally in love of the conquers. Thanks Amazon for bringing us these hansome and charismatic men to the screen. As a Mexican I have read about the history and being in the hot spots in Mexico City, but watching it in tv helps a lot to understand it. Even so, is too soap opera style.
  • Cinematography: 6/10 The show has very simple bare bone cinematography; composition is at times jarring and as a result feels un-cinematic. Battles are simple, with only a few extras on-screen. Editing: 6/10 The editing is also very simple, nothing clever, although composites are okay, the cgi at times looks terrible. Sound design:6/10 Basic sound design you've heard a million times before, no Wilhelm scream so far. Writing:-5/10 The writing is slow paced, there are a lot of flash-backs for character development, and there are a lot of creative liberties taken with historical events in order to sympathize more with our hero "Hernan" since he is our main point of view to the story. The villains the "Mexicas" are dumbed down for plot purposes. I give it such a low score because of it's use of "black legend".

    Final thoughts: The show is very Eurocentric, I would have loved to see more of the natives people of America like in CONQUISTADORES: ADVENTUM.

    CONQUISTADORES: ADVENTUM is a more serious and entertaining show that does not romanticize one side, but rather explores the humanity in the people caught in that time period, without having to modify historical facts for plot's sake. Conquistadores is an immersive experience of the conquista meanwhile this show feels more like a slow power point presentation.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Like others, I felt like the flashbacks weren't helpful.

    The series should have built up to the amazing Mexica city.

    There was also a lack of depth. At no time do we get an idea of the size of the armies - except for one main battle where they seem quite small.

    Filming in the city feels claustrophobic and again doesn't provide a sense of awe.

    Apart from these criticisms I enjoyed this series.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    And interestingly, with real people with real motivations behind the historical clichés we're all too acquainted with. The reconstruction of Tenochtitlan, the pre-Columbian cultures, attires, cities and people are just palatable, though the story lingers a tad sometimes or moves forward and backward a bit too fast to my taste. A pleasure to watch, anyways, definitely recommended!
  • vicktormgs14 December 2019
    Impressed with the way to recreate history. I love the production so real that they have made history and each chapter showing a little beyond the old continent and the conquest!
  • So slow and boring I fell asleep in first chapter. No more