Master and Commander - the Movie
What better way to explore Mars and Uranus in Pisces than a film about naval warfare! What better actor to portray this combination of strength, leadership, sensitivity and courage, than Russell Crowe! The movie was made during the significant and prominent line up of Mars (in close proximity to Earth) and Uranus in Pisces during 2003. A key factor in the film was the question of whether superior marine technology [Uranus in Pisces] could be outgunned and outwitted by gut instinct [Mars in Pisces]. Both sides used deception and disguise [Pisces] that must have been unacceptable by the conventions of the early 19th century - where soldiers wore blatent red uniforms, ships proudly displayed prominent flags and officers nobly surrendered on behalf of their men.
Captain Jack Aubrey [Russell Crowe], a man with sea salt in his veins, displays extraordinary leadership skills to overcome fear and superstition from his men and motivate them in appalling and unhygenic conditions [Mars/Uranus in Pisces]. Leadership was by confidence, convention and mystique. For example, Captain Aubrey was able to inspire his men by nurturing an almost cult-like worship of the deceased and legendary leader, Admiral Lord Nelson [Sun Libra, Mars Scorpio].
Was the pursuit of scientific knowledge about nature of any consequence compared to the 'duelling' between France and Britain after Trafalgar? The Mars/Uranus conjunction was opposed by Jupiter in Virgo representing Napoleonic and French expansionist plans. In my opinion, Paris is a Virgo city, with its emphasis of quality over quantity. However, Jupiter in Virgo also represented the detailed taxonomy of rare species in the Galapagos Islands. (This side-adventure was an interesting precursor to Darwin's visit).
Russell's chart personifies many of the leadership qualities so well displayed in Gladiator. Mars rising in Aries plus the Sun in Aries in the first house, gives him and the world a very clear sense of who he is and how to take command. However, the Sun is also closely quincunx Neptune (the only solar aspect to a planet) and Saturn in Pisces in 11th, adds the sense of responsibility for the lives of his men and a sensitivity to ensure that he remains in touch with the mood of his men.
When I wrote about Mars/Uranus in Pisces with Mars at its perigee, on these pages in the summer of 2003, I mentioned that there would be much blood and gore in the world. There was - the news was full of a spate of suicide bombings in the Middle East and massacre in Liberia. The movie mirrored this energy, simply by portraying the injuries and the primitive surgical operations with realism.
Overall, this is a superb film about the antics of men whose activities shaped our post colonial world. On paper, it will never become a block-buster - the love interest score is 1 out 10. But in practice, it is a remarkably accurate portrayal of extraordinary lives under extraordinary conditions. Afterwards, one wonders if the Perfect Storm  with George Clooney, took place in a teacup!