The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse
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The hit MGM film, The 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse, opened in Chicago on Friday, March 23, 1962, at the Balaban & Katz State Lake. It played several weeks. An ad reads: "A Roadshow Attraction at Regular Prices and Continuous Performances."

Chicago American, Friday, March 9, 1962, p. 17, c. 5 [extract]:

Ann Marsters

Horsemen to Ride Again

Perhaps a brief refresher course on The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse is in order. Some people seem to have forgotten the significance of the title, and thee are others who have an idea it has something to do with Notre Dame football players.

The evils of war are typified in the Apocalypse [the last book of the New Testament known as the book of Revelation] by four horsemenConquest, Slaughter, Famine, and Deathwho appear on white, red, black, and pale horses respectively.

Vincente Blasco Ibanes, the Spanish novelist, wrote a novel of World War I entitled The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in 1916. It was hailed as a classic and became a successful motion picture, starring Rudolph Valentino, in 1921.

Now a new and star filled version has been made by MGM with Glenn Ford in the Valentino role. And the story has been updated to World War II. The State-Lake theater will play it later this month.


Chicago American, Tuesday, March 27, 1962, p. 13, 5 [extract]:

New Gloss on Old Four Horsemen

War Drama Absorbing

By Ann Brazel

In the 20s The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse left its wake a generation of passionate pacifists and a star who had slithered onto the scene in a tango and remains until today as the symbol of cinema romance. Of course that is Rudolph Valentino.

The Nazis are shown as a bad lot. True, their great sin is pictured as not much more than supreme arrogance and great rudeness, but there seems an urgency to wipe them out. It is commendable that the hero works for the French resistance.

Most of the drama takes place in occupied Paris. People live feverishly while the war breathes hot on their necks. There are interesting period touches such as a 1939 cocktail party with heated conversation about Chamberlain, the Treaty of Versailles, and that house painter in Munich.

If the film is not the epic it purports to be, it also is not trivial. I noted the audience was absorbed. It is fashionable to twit Hollywood on its glossy productions, but know how produces at least a good show. Ingrid Thulin, Yvette Mimieux, and Karl Boehm are decorative and at least the first named is effective.


Chicago Tribune, March 26, 1962, s. 2, p. 10, c. 3 [extract]:

A Valentino Remake in New Dress

By Mae Tinnee

A gaudy, lengthy film, this remake of a former Rudolph Valentino hit seems terribly dated. And its full of clichs in every department. The time is moved up to World War II, but the film techniques havent.

The film opens with a dreadfully melodramatic scene in which Lee J. Cobb leaps around and shouts lines such as Seed of my seed.

If there are any acting honors, they go to Paul Lukas and Charles Boyer. Glenn Ford moves thru his role in wooden fashion. Ingrid Thulin, who is gauntly striking in appearance, is equally without warmth.

Director Minnelli seems bound to underscore every event. Scenes in which Hitler and his cohorts appear are photographed in scarlet, various stages of the war are colors of the rainbow. And the four horsemen seem to be gilded, a touch apparently inspired by an ornamental firescreen. The musical score is equally annoying, with a full orchestra playing for much of the time, and violins taking off with saccharine obbligatos every time the lovers get together.


Chicago Daily News, March 20, 1962 [extract]:

4 Horsemen on Way Here

By Sam Lesner

Conquest, War, Pestilence, DeathThe Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, ride across the sky in all wars, Vincente Minnelli declared when asked why he updated to World war II his new screen version of the celebrated novel by Vicente Blanco Ibanes.

In 1921 screen version (set in World War I) brought fame to Rudolph Valentino

The new MGM film opens Friday at the State Lake Theater.

Filmed largely on location in Paris and French chateau country, the film stars also Ingrid Thulin, Swedish star making her Hollywood debut, Charles Boyer, Lee J. Cobb, Paul Lukas, Yvette Mimieux, Karl Boehm, a young Austrian star also making his American debut, and Paul Henried.


Chicago Daily News, March 26, 1962 [extract]

Four Apocalypse Horsemen updated

By Sam Lesner

For want of a fifth horseman, Vincente Minnellis new screen version of the 1920 film drama, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, fall into a mire of melodramatic clichs that are much better acted than they are elucidated.

As window dressing it is a highly cinematic ornamentation for a commonplace melodrama of wars distortion of human values. The Nazi thing has become an awful clich.

But the film has ample production quality. Minnelli handles a party scene with a rare skill that has become his mark of distinction.


Chicago Sun-Times, Tuesday, March 27, 1962, p. 41, c. 4 [extract]

Apocalypse Is Updated

By Doris Arden

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse is a remarkably old-fashioned picture told in old-fashioned terms. (Hollywoods current enthusiasm for remakes is beginning to cause us alarm.}

It is both lavishly and handsomely produced, so that it is good to look at, and director Vincente Minelli gives a good many of its scenes a kind of grace.

But its motivations are as baldly stated as in a nursery rhyme, and its characters posture across the screen as if they were stuffed with copy-book maxims and clichs.

As for Ford, who specialices in the boyish, cleancut American type, we have not seen such miscasting in quite a while. Well, not since Rosalind Russell and Alec Guinness made A Majority of One.

It is obvious that time, effort and care have been lavished on the picture. The question is: Was it worth it?


Chicago Tribune, June 30, 1961, s. 2, p. 1, c. 1:


by Hedda Hopper

. . . . When Denise Minnelli, wearing a flat bow atop her shoulder length bob appeared in her living room, her husbnd, Vincente, looked at her fondly ahd quipped, "Meet my Yugoslavian Eloise." Vincente tells me he put leotards on the four horses in "Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse" then gilded them with gold. The equines are on a treadmill and go thru fire, water, and hurricanes. . . .


Chicago American, February 10, 1962:


Yvette Mimieux learned the hard way that "the bigger they are the nicer they are" when she arrived very late at a cocktail-tea given by French Ambassador Henri Alphand and his wife in Washington, D. C.

Yvette's plane had been delayed out of Chicago because of a snowstorm. She was due in Wasington long before the hour she did arrive to attend the party in the embassy and then to appear at the premiere later of "Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse."

Over long-distance Yvette told me: "We were so late at the embassy that everyone else had left. But charming Mme. Alphand insisted on giving us tea and personally escorting us thru the embassy."


Chicago American, Tuesday, February 6, 1962, p. 3, c. 4:

[Photo of Miss Mimieux]

Chilly Guest

Yvette Mimieux, a native of London and later a resident of Los Angeles where she was discovered by a talent scout and signed by MGM, was glad she wore her parka when her American Airlines plane landed at O'Hare airport. She was bound for Washington at the invitation of the National Press club.


Chicago American, Tuesday, February 6, 1962:


Yvette Mimieux, so breathtakingly lovely in "Light in the Piazza," is in town en route to Washington for the American premiere of "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse" in which she appears with Glenn Ford.

Perle Mesta will give a party for Yvette and Glenn.


Chicago American, Tuesday, October 10, 1961, p 12, c. 6:


Stage to Get Ingrid Thulin After Film for Bergman

Hollywood, Cal.---From Stockholm, I get the word that Ingrid Thulin isn't sitting around waiting to hear about the reaction to "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse," in which she makes her American film debut. I hear, however, she is a joy to behold in it.

The cooly beautiful Miss Thulin started to work yesterday in a new production for Sweden's top moviemaker, Ingemar Bergman, who discovered Ingrid originally. Bergman calls this one, "Mountain of Silence," tho I understand it deals with considerable violence.

After Ingrid completes this, she is scheduled to do Shaw's "Major Barbara," followed by Faulkner's "Requiem for a Nun," both on the Stockholm stage. So, considering that MGM has an option on her services, and that her young husband is a millionaire, I'd say Ingrid is sitting very pretty.


Chicago American, Saturday, August 19, 1961:

'Horsemen' Near Finish

An impressive symphonic scores is now being prepared b Andre Previn for "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse." It will utilize the 100 piece MGM symphonic orchestra, augmented in the string brass and percussion sections.

Plans call for the score to be recorded late next month, when a final cut of the film will be completed.

The picture, with Glenn Ford and Ingrid Thulin heading the cast, is directed by Vincente Minnelli and produced by Julian Blaustein.


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