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Quo Vadis? (1913)

 |  Drama, History  |  March 1913 (Hungary)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 136 users  
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Title: Quo Vadis? (1913)

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Cast

Credited cast:
Amleto Novelli ...
Gustavo Serena ...
Amelia Cattaneo ...
Carlo Cattaneo ...
Lea Giunchi ...
Augusto Mastripietri ...
Cesare Moltini ...
Olga Brandini ...
Ignazio Lupi ...
Giovanni Gizzi ...
Lia Orlandini
Matilde Guillaume
Ida Carloni Talli
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bruto Castellani ...
Giuseppe Gambardella
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Drama | History

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Release Date:

March 1913 (Hungary)  »

Also Known As:

De keizer Nero  »

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Budget:

ITL 45,000 (estimated)
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1.33 : 1
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In an arena scene where a Thracian defeats a Retiatius, the director filmed the final matching exactly the painting "Police Verso / Thumbs Down" (1872) by Jean-Léon Gérôme, now at the Phoenix Art Museum, Arizona, USA. See more »

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Featured in Nora (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Herr Enrico Guazzoni's Grand Scale Masterpiece

"Quo Vadis?" (1913) was a landmark in early Italian historical epic films and certainly Herr Enrico Guazzoni's grand scale masterpiece laid the foundations for what genuine kolossal Italian spectacles should be. It had a great deal of influence on Herr Giovanni Pastrone's "Cabiria" 1914) and D.W. Griffith's "Intolerance" (1916).

It is easy to see why "Quo Vadis?" shocked early silent audiences because even today to watch this astonishing oeuvre is like visiting an archaeological delicatessen and is a pleasure for silent fans. The film is a larger-than-life picture that was based on a Polish historical novel written by Henryk Sienkiewicz. The book was adapted for the silent and talkie screen many times but the story is so complex that it is hard to summarize in film form. There are a lot of Romans, an incendiary Caesar, many Christians and a horde of extras. Sometimes this Herr Graf got a little confused trying to remember who loves who and who is conspiring against whom.

"Quo Vadis?" is typical of Herr Guazzoni with his eye for details and his skill in using his big budget to maximum effect. The film is well paced and of course there are many great set pieces: Rome in flames, a chariot race and a coliseum full of gladiators, helpless Christians and very hungry lions. Besides the grand spectacle, the film includes also more prosaic subjects like morality and faith in reference to the early Christians and the struggle of this new religion and its human values in the face of Roman decadence and barbarism.

In technical aspects, "Quo Vadis?" is a surprising oeuvre for its detailed framing wherein the depth of field works very effectively in focusing the viewer' s attention right where it needs to be when some much is happening on screen.

Unfortunately "Quo Vadis?" hasn't had the well-earned praise of other similar Italian historical epic films; that's what usually happens with the pioneers. These early and innovative masters have their work copied by advanced pupils who end up with the fame and glory. As the German saying goes: "raise crows, and they'll gouge out your eyes"… And now, if you'll allow me, I must temporarily take my leave because this German Count must throw some servants into the Schloss' Coliseum arena.

Herr Graf Ferdinand Von Galitzien http://ferdinandvongalitzien.blogspot.com


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