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Roman centurion Marcian is captured by Attila the Hun en route to Constantinople, but escapes. On arrival, he finds the eastern Roman emperor Theodosius plotting with Attila to look the other way while the latter marches against Rome. But Marcian gains the favor of Pulcheria, lovely sister of Theodosius, who favors a united Empire. As Attila marches, things look bleak for the weakened imperial forces. But the conqueror has an awe of the power of the Christians' God... Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
There have been several films which try to tell the story of this magnificently evil character, Atilla . If ever there were just one person who embodied the essence of evil, the top three contenders would have to to be 1/Atilla, 2/Herod, King of the Jews (of the massacre of the Innocents) and 3/ Adolf Hitler; all splendid Hallmarks of Evil.
Palance is in his element here. Having already made his mark in "Shane" as the heartless, evil gunman which the town feared, he takes evil to a whole new level in "Sign of the Pagan".
The music is glorious and the color is so wonderful. All of the actors really gave their best in this effort. Palance makes you believe his character is evil.
If you ever get the chance to see this film and the one made after 1996, together, bear in mind that they deal with the story from different perspectives. Both are close to being historically correct...as much as they can be. "Sign of the Pagan" is a study in Power and Might where the newer Atilla story is a Love Story with some interesting action thrown in.
If this movie is on your "HOT LIST", check out "The Tatars" with victor Mature (c.1961), "The Black Rose" (1950; with Tyrone Power and Jack Hawkins) and "Swordsman of Sienna" (1956? starring Stewart Granger).
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