Historical evocation of Ludwig, king of Bavaria, from his crowning in 1864 until his death in 1886, as a romantic hero. Fan of Richard Wagner, betrayed by him, in love with his cousin Elisabeth of Austria, abandonned by her, tormented by his homosexuality, he will little by little slip towards madness. Written by
Ludwig. He loved women. He loved men. He lived as controversially as he ruled. But he did not care what the world thought. He was the world. From Luchino Visconti, the director of "The Damned" and "Death in Venice". Once again your eyes will be opened.
After playing Elisabeth of Austria in the Sissi trilogy in the fifties, Romy Schneider made clear she didn't want to have anything to do with the Austrian empress anymore, claiming the character ruined her career as an actress because everyone subsequently wanted to see her in romantic roles. She only agreed to appear in Ludwig (1973) as a favor to Luchino Visconti who was a very good friend of hers. See more »
Ludwig truly is Visconti's magnificent epic masterpiece. The life of Ludwig II of Bavaria is truly worthy of a great film epic and Helmut Berger is amazingly good in the lead role. The exquisitely beautiful Romy Schneider is incredible as Ludwig's cousin Empress Elisabeth of Austria. The costumes and settings are truly magnificent. Visconti has actually gained access to some of the original locations which make his film truly wonderful. Castle Nymphenberg is truly beautiful. The luscious coronation preparation scene is truly evocative of the period with the magnificent uniforms and court dresses. Izabella Telezynska is amazing in the role of Queen Marie of Bavaria, Ludwig's Mother as is Gert Frobe as Ludwig's confessor. The very talented Helmut Griem is fantastic as Count Durckheim as is Trevor Howard as Wagner. The odious Professor Dr.Gudden is well played by Heinz Moog. John Moulder-Brown is also very good as Ludwig's younger brother, Prince Otto. This truly is a masterpiece of cinema.
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