In 1926 the tragic and untimely death of a silent screen actor caused female moviegoers to riot in the streets and in some cases to commit suicide - that actor was Rudolph Valentino. ... See full summary »
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The prostitute Liz works on the streets of Los Angeles. She recalls her life in flashback, when she marries an alcoholic man. She leaves him with their son. Then she works as waitress in a ... See full summary »
In 17th-century France, Father Urbain Grandier seeks to protect the city of Loudun from the corrupt establishment of Cardinal Richelieu. Hysteria occurs within the city when he is accused of witchcraft by a sexually repressed nun.
A writer taking a rest in a country hotel is obsessed with a strange woman in the same hotel. The woman seems to observe him in provocative ways, but he does not dare to approach her. One ... See full summary »
In 1926 the tragic and untimely death of a silent screen actor caused female moviegoers to riot in the streets and in some cases to commit suicide - that actor was Rudolph Valentino. Ballroom dancer Valentino manipulated his good looks and animal-like grace into a Hollywood career. His smouldering love making, tinged with a touch of masterful cruelty, expressed a sexuality which was at once both shocking and sensual. Written by
A major piece of advertising art (a shot of Nureyev embracing Michelle Phillips) had to be retouched in mid-campaign after someone noticed he was wearing a trendy Seventies tank watch that didn't exist in the Twenties - a mistake clumsily corrected by airbrushing out the chunk of his wrist bearing anachronistic timepiece. See more »
Ken Russell, the distinguished English director, gives us his own take on the legend of Rudolph Valentino, the legendary silent star. This biopic that Mr. Russell has written with Mardick Martin, doesn't deliver the promise of showing the man behind the fame. In a way, this is probably the interpretation of the writers, based on well known facts, no doubt. However, the film that one sees has an amateurish look, that has a lot to do with the casting of the title character: Rudolf Nureyev.
Mr. Nureyev was an accomplished dancer. As an actor, either his style is not what one expected, or Mr. Russell's direction to the star was completely wrong. The end result is a picture much too long, but with the usual Ken Russell palette of rich colors and lush scenery. The traditional excesses of the director are present in the film, and while we don't care for this man the way he is presented, one can see Mr. Russell's exuberance all over the film. One can't help to wonder what picture would have been made with another actor in the title role.
The film offers brilliant moments where Ken Russell shines, but the end result is uninteresting. At the end, Valentino, the man, remains an enigma.
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