What led to the fall of the Bronze Age and who was ultimately responsible? Generations of archeologists have debated every recorded account of this 3,000-year-old event. The informative documentary The Bronze Age Collapse relies on the latest research findings in an attempt to discern fact from folklore.
The Bronze Age occurred during the period of 3000 BC to 1200 BC. It was marked by great innovations that promoted the advancement of civilization and promoted a thriving economic and cultural landscape. Its demise has often been credited to the barbaric actions of the Sea Peoples, an alliance that went to war with Egypt and surrounding regions. The Sea Peoples ultimately lost the battle, but their vigor and destruction so weakened the regions that they would ultimately fall into decline as a result.
The film picks up cues from modern-day researchers who have long questioned this official narrative. Did the Sea Peoples really possess the level of brawn and influence necessary to ensure Egypt's decline? Or did the source of their demise come from within? The reasons for the collapse are much more complex, the film contends, and require a keen understanding of the interconnections between each of the nations involved.
In order to speculate on the chief culprits behind the collapse, the film dives well into the 13th century BC and beyond to outline the key conflicts between Greece, Assyria, the Hittite Empire, and the Egyptian new Kingdom. It's a story of strenuous conflicts over trade routes, delicate power struggles between nations, a natural disasters that set the stage for man-made calamity, and growing civil unrest. Much of these insights are drawn from the acclaimed historical work 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed by author Eric H. Cline.
The Bronze Age Collapse features nearly an hour of deeply informed narration and a series of sourced footage and illustrations that illuminate each morsel of history that is explored throughout. The film evokes a vivid sense of place and time, the lives of the people, and the struggles they faced. It approaches long-accepted history with a fresh perspective and uncovers details that might prove revelatory to even the most devoted historians.