Jason and the Argonauts (TV miniseries)
Jason and the Argonauts, (also known as Jason and the Golden Fleece) is a 2000 TV movie, directed by Nick Willing and produced by Hallmark Entertainment. It is very loosely based on the Greek myth of Jason and the Argonauts.
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The film opens as soldiers invade the city of Iolcus. King Aeson's (Ciarán Hinds) brother Pelias (Dennis Hopper) is leading the charge. Inside the temple he goes to embrace his brother but produces a dagger and kills him during the embrace. This is witnessed by his wife Polymele (Diana Kent) and his son Jason (Jason London). He intends to do the same to Jason but one of the guards rescues him and takes him out of the palace through a secret tunnel.
It is then revealed that this is a memory, experienced as a nightmare by an older Jason, who awakes. He is then ordered by his uncle to retrieve the golden fleece.
He recruits a crew from the simple folk of Iolcus, including shepherds and farmers. He is joined by Hercules (Brian Thompson), Orpheus (Adrian Lester), Atalanta (Olga Sosnovska) and the brothers Castor and Pollux. Acastus stows away on the ship. The Argonauts run aground on a strange island in the middle of the ocean that is actually the sea god Poseidon. In the ensuing storm, they lose the map. The crew make their way to the Isle of Lemnos, an island of warrior women, to recover from the experience and repair the ship. The men pleasure themselves with the women while their ship is repaired (except Orpheus and Atalanta) and Jason sleeps with the queen Hypsipyle. Atalanta discovers that the women have killed all the men on the island and are planning to sacrifice the crew. She warns Jason, and the Argonauts flee the island.
The crew become rebellious and Jason has Zetes, a young man with brilliant vision, see the stars and find their route to Tabletop Island, where they find Phineus. They are attacked by the Harpies - the winged monsters that torment Phineus - and kill them. In return, Phineus tells them the Golden Fleece is in Colchis. Meanwhile, on Colchis, the princess Medea has visions of the crew and her brother Aspyrtes goes out to find them. Jason finds the ship wrecked and rescues Aspyrtes. They approach the "Dark Rocks" and send a dove through before sailing through themselves.
The ship docks at Colchis and Jason goes ashore with Aspyrtes, Castor and Pollux. Hera asks Eros to shoot Medea so she falls in love with Jason. King Aertes wants Jason killed but Medea convinces him to face the Minoan Bull. Medea gives Jason magic oil that protects Jason from the bull's fire-breath. Jason yokes the bull and ploughs a field and sows it with dragon's teeth. Warriors sprout up from the earth, and Jason tricks them into attacking each other. Medea tells Jason she must go with the Fleece. Aspyrtes overhears this and sends soldiers out after them.
The other Argonauts debate whether to leave or not. Hercules, Orpheus and Argos sail the ship around the island to make it seem as if they have left while the others hide in the water and then join Jason and Medea. When the soldiers attack, Medea kills her brother and leads them to the Fleece which is guarded by a dragon. Some Argonauts are killed before Jason sets a noose around the dragon's neck and makes it fall off a precipice. They take the Fleece and sail away from Colchis.
Acastus has been wounded and Medea uses magic to heal him. Atalanta confesses she loves Jason but he says he will marry Medea. She has a vision of her father's death and the two kiss. Zeus attempts to seduce Medea but she says she loves Jason, even when he pulls out Eros's arrow. The ship arrives back in Iolcus and Jason learns his mother killed herself, believing him and Acastus to be dead. They rest in the bay and Acastus steals the Fleece and goes into town. Pelias kills him and takes the Fleece. Medea then goes and says he will marry her. Jason and the others sneak into the palace through the secret tunnel. Argos is killed by one of the guards. Pelias tries to kill Jason but is stabbed by his own knife.
- Jason London as Jason
- Frank Langella as King Aeëtes
- Natasha Henstridge as Hypsipyle
- Derek Jacobi as Phineus
- Olivia Williams as Hera
- Angus Macfadyen as Zeus
- Dennis Hopper as Pelias
- Jolene Blalock as Medea
- James Callis as Aspyrtes
- Brian Thompson as Hercules
- Adrian Lester as Orpheus
- Ciarán Hinds as King Aeson
- Diana Kent as Polymele
- David Calder as Argos
- Mark Lewis Jones as Mopsus
- Hugh Quarshie as Chiron (the Centaur)
- Olga Sosnovska as Atalanta
- Kieran O'Brien as Actor
- Tom Harper as Acastus
- Omid Djalili as Castor
- John Sharian as Pollux
- Rhys Miles Thomas as Zetes
- Mark Folan Deasy as Iphicles
- Elliot Levey as Canthus
- Xavier Anderson as Phanos
- Charles Cartmell as Laertes
- Dodger Phillips as Tiphys
- Peter Gevisser as Budes
- Norman Roberts as Echion
- Greg Hicks as Priest
- Adam Cooper as Eros
- Mickey Churchill (as Micky Churchill) as Boy Jason
- John Bennett as Idas
- Andrew Tansey as Aeëtes' 1st General
- Richard Bonehill as Aeëtes' 2nd General
- Freda Dowie as Hera as Old Peasant Woman
- Zeta Graff as Hypsipyle's 1st General
- Zoë Eeles (as Zoe Eeles) as Actor's Lemnite Girl
- Alit Kreiz as High Priestess
- Andrew Scarborough as Aeson's Soldier
- Alan Stocks as Pelias' Bodyguard
- Suzanne Harbison as Mopsus' Lemnite Girl
- Freya Archard (uncredited) as Zetes' Lemnite Girl
- Joseph Gatt (uncredited) as Atlas
- Mike Savva (uncredited) as Pelias' Bodyguard
- List of historical drama films
- Greek mythology in popular culture
- Jason and the Argonauts (1963 film)