In Argentina, the family man Julio Madariaga is the patriarch of his family and considers his farm the paradise on Earth. One of his daughters, Luisa Desnoyers, has married the Frenchman ...
See full summary »
Tom Lee is a sensitive boy of 17 whose lack of interest in the "manly" pursuits of sports, mountain climbing and girls labels him "sister-boy" at the college he is attending. Head master ... See full summary »
Geoffrey Thorpe, a buccaneer, is hired by Queen Elizabeth I to nag the Spanish Armada. The Armada is waiting for the attack on England and Thorpe surprises them with attacks on their galleons where he shows his skills on the sword.
In Argentina, the family man Julio Madariaga is the patriarch of his family and considers his farm the paradise on Earth. One of his daughters, Luisa Desnoyers, has married the Frenchman immigrant Marcelo Desnoyers and they have one son, the playboy Julio, and one daughter, the gorgeous student of Sorbonne Chi Chi. His other daughter, Elena von Hartrott, has married the German Karl von Hartrott, and they have three sons: Heinrich, Gustav and Franz. In 1938, Heinrich returns from Germany for a family reunion and when he tells that he has joined the SS, the displeased Julio Madariaga has a heart attack and dies. When France is occupied by the Germans, the family reunites in Paris and Franz is the Nazi administrator in France. The alienated Julio has a studio where he paints, and has a love affair with Marguerite Laurier, the wife of the owner of a newspaper Etienne Laurier that is fighting in Belgium. Meanwhile Chi Chi joins the French resistance and is arrested. Julio uses the ... Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Vincente Minnelli did all he could to sign Alain Delon for the role of Julio, but the producers were set on having an American star in the lead. Glenn Ford was a proven box office star with a working agreement with MGM, so he was hired for $150,000. See more »
Plane at the beginning of the movie changes from white to light green one. Also numbers on plane or the plane model don't match either. See more »
When you're watching Minnelli's work today you cannot help but thinking that he had a strong influence on Luchino Visconti's "la caditi dei degli" (1969)Actually the two movies begin the same way:a family whose members are tearing each other part because some of them go nazi.It does not matter if the scene takes place in Argentina in Minnelli's work:we find the same madness,the same baroque side and similarities abound:the old man's death echoes to that of the patriarch of the Essenbeck family in " la caduit dei degli" .Karl Boehm's character inspired Helmut Griem's one.And Ingrid Thulin is featured in both films,although she does not appear in the first thirty minutes,the best..
The dinner scene remains impressive today:if it certainly inspired Visconti later ,itself takes probably its roots in Frank Borzague's masterwork "mortal storm" (1940),which tackled long before his two peers the subject of the family and nazism.But Minnelli added gaudy colors ,typical of the fifties melodrama ,and special effects -the four horsemen who will come back ,particularly later when chic people are dancing while war is raging outside.Actually this scene is so strong as the rest of the movie seems like a let-down afterward .All that takes place in Paris does not rise above average.The film never recaptures the intensity of its beginning,except for its very last minutes,with the final confrontation between the two cousins -it's difficult to admit,though ,that Glenn Ford and Karl Boehm are relatives.
If a strong beginning and an effective ending make a good film ,you can say that Minnelli's extravaganza is worth a watch.It's not among his best works ,but if critic Georges Sadoul said "the first sequence is sheer aggressive bad taste" ,do not forget that "good taste" does not necessarily make great works.
13 of 19 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?