This musical version of Don Quixote is framed by an incident allegedly from the life of its author, Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote is the mad, aging nobleman who embarrasses his ... See full summary »
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This retelling of the classic tale of James Hilton's Utopian lost world plays out uneasily amid musical production numbers and Bacharach pop music. While escaping war-torn China, a group of... See full summary »
This musical version of Don Quixote is framed by an incident allegedly from the life of its author, Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote is the mad, aging nobleman who embarrasses his respectable family by his adventures. Backed by his faithful sidekick Sancho Panza, he duels windmills and defends his perfect lady Dulcinea (who is actually a downtrodden whore named Aldonza). Written by
The original creators of the show - Dale Wasserman (author), Albert Marre (director) and Mitch Leigh (composer) - were all originally hired by United Artists to work on the film, but UA was unhappy with the screen tests they made, so they were all dismissed and director Peter Glenville was called in. But when UA discovered that he planned to eliminate most of the songs, he was also dismissed. UA then rehired Wasserman, and added Saul Chaplin and producer-director Arthur Hiller, who retained most of the musical's score for the film. However, the "look" of the film, according to Chaplin, had already been largely determined by the previous creative teams hired to make the movie. It has always remained unclear who cast the usually non-singing actors (such as Sophia Loren, who sang in the film, and Peter O'Toole, whose singing was dubbed), and which creative team cast the singing actors (Julie Gregg, Gino Conforti, James Coco and several of the "muleteers"). See more »
Both the film and stage performances of the play it's based, on depict the elderly Miguel de Cervantes y Saavedra as able to use both hands. The real Cervantes had a paralyzed left hand from his wound in the Battle of Lepanto (1571) when he was a 20-something. See more »
Miguel de Cervantes:
I shall impersonate a man. His name is Alonso Quijana, a country squire no longer young. Being retired, he has much time for books. He studies them from morn till night and often through the night and morn again, and all he reads oppresses him; fills him with indignation at man's murderous ways toward man. He ponders the problem of how to make better a world where evil brings profit and virtue none at all; where fraud and deceit are mingled with truth and sincerity. He broods and broods and ...
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Practically all of the actors in the film, with the exception of those who play the Captain of the Guard and the soldiers of the Spanish Inquisition respectively, play dual or triple roles, but only five of them are actually listed in the credits as having done so. All of the other actors are listed as if they only played one role in the film. See more »
I've been reading a lot of negative reviews for this movie, and I can't understand why. I've seen "Man of La Mancha" twice now and find it incredibly entertaining and inspiring. Though he doesn't sing, Peter O'Toole is enchanting as Quixote and Sophia Loren (perhaps the sexiest woman in film history) is a marvelous Aldonza/Dulcinea. The songs, less numerous than those in the play, are well sung, arranged and recorded (except for one bit where Sancho's mouth moves but no sound comes out) the action is choreographed beautifully and the story moves along very well. Moreover, it fits neatly into the "Yeah, he's crazy. So?" category alongside films like "Harvey" and "Don Juan DeMarco."
So why would others choose to give this a bad review? I may have the answer. Not only have I listened to songs from the two Broadway cast recordings that exist, I have had much experience with Broadway fans (being one myself) and know that the truly die-hard fans tend to ONLY like the original cast ONLY like the original production and NEVER like the movie version.
This is the conclusion I have reached: It isn't the movie "Man of La Mancha" that sucks...it's the play. Indeed, watching it on screen you are given to wonder how it can be successfully presented on stage, and perhaps it cannot. But, old-school Broadway fans won't have it! "The original is better" say the die-hards. "Who needs Frank Sinatra and Marlon Brando? The original cast of 'Guys and Dolls' is better! Richard Gere? Jerry Orbach is better in 'Chicago'! And the movie version on 'Bye Bye Birdie' sucks."
These are all monstrous lies, as Sinatra, Brando and Gere were great in their respective movies and the movie version of 'Bye Bye Birdie' is infinitely superior to the play. So don't listen to the die-hards, choose quality over tradition. Rent or buy "Man of La Mancha" on DVD because it's one you'll want to watch again and again.
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