Three centuries before Christus. Young Cabiria is kidnapped by some pirates during one eruption of the Etna. She is sold as a slave in Carthage, and as she is just going to be sacrificed to... See full summary »
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Three centuries before Christus. Young Cabiria is kidnapped by some pirates during one eruption of the Etna. She is sold as a slave in Carthage, and as she is just going to be sacrificed to god Moloch, Cabiria is rescued by both Fulvio Axilla, a Roman noble, and his giant slave Maciste. Maciste is captured just after having confided Cabiria to Sophinisbe's safe keeping, while Fulvio Axilla manages to escape from Carthage. Ten years went away with Punic wars before he is able to come back to Carthage... Written by
Celebrity writer Gabriele D'Annunzio was originally hired by Pastrone to write the screenplay. After long delays Pastrone and his assistant went to Paris, where D'Annunzio lived at the time, to excite him into action. More time passed, and the director's patience grew thinner and thinner, and in the end D'Annunzio merely rewrote in poetic prose the titles Pastrone prepared. See more »
1914 was quite a year. Charlie Chaplin made his film debut, WWI began -- and set the stage for a lot of what happened in the 20th century -- and my great-grandparents immigrated to the United States (sorry, I couldn't resist adding that last one).
But that year also saw the release of Giovanni Pastrone's "Cabiria". This epic depicts the kidnapping of a Sicilian girl following an eruption of Mt. Etna, her sale into slavery in Carthage, and a Roman nobleman's quest to rescue her. It's like nothing that you've ever seen before.
The movie has drawn controversy due to its depiction of the Romans as pure and the Carthaginians as monstrous (thereby glorifying the idea of Italian supremacy). To be certain, producer Gabriele d'Annunzio's ideology influenced Benito Mussolini, although d'Annunzio had no actual association with Il Duce.
Regardless of that, the movie is still a fun -- and visually breathtaking -- romp. Maciste got his own series of movies. The ones immediately after "Cabiria" starred Bartolomeo Pagano, and then there was a new series in the 1960s.
Anyway, really cool!
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