In 1500, Duke Cesare Borgia hopes to marry his sister (widowed by poison) to the heir apparent of Ferrara, which impedes his conquest of central Italy. On this delicate mission he sends Andrea Orsini, his cousin Angela's lover and nearly as unscrupulous as himself. En route, Orsini meets Camilla Verano, wife of the count of Citta' del Monte (Borgia's next intended conquest); and sentiment threatens to turn him against his deadly master, whom no one betrays twice...Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
This story takes place during the time of Cesare Borgia, who died in 1507; however, the first scene of the movie--which shows Borgia with other characters--takes place in a room decorated with a fresco of Saint Michael by Federico Zuccari, who was born around 1540, and who started to work in Rome during the reign of HH Pius IV (1559-1565). See more »
Once again, Welles astounds with his talent. Even though he is not listed in this film's credits as director or writer, the great Welles has left indefatigable stamp of genius on this film. His fascination and artistic absorption with great, unbridled power, moral resistance to that power and the response of the artist has once again propelled him to greatness.
His is a fascinating, swaggering, bemused, sly (as the title implies) impression of the all-powerful Borgia and his near success at corrupting the artist, Orsini. Shades of Citizen Kane and Harry Lyme..?
Naturally, there is a weaselly accomplice (Sloan), and he is terrific too. I found Tyrone Power's performance more than adequate -- for once. Production values were good, too.
But the keynote of the entire production is the masterful Welles. His portrayals are a joy to encounter, maybe because he finds the rich and powerful entertainingly evil, while the rest of us poor mortals find them too intimidating to even acknowledge.
Who cares about Welles' "troubles with Hollywood"? Skip the gossip, people, and THINK about his characters' motives and behavior. And their relevance.
(Talk is cheap. It is easy for the American Film Institute to call Citizen Kane the number one movie of all time, but which side were they on when Welles was being persecuted by his Hollywood peers? And where are they now, when talented independent filmmakers are trying to get their "dangerous" films shown -- or recognized)?
The fact is, with or without support or financing, Welles was in a class by himself. His brilliant mind, rampant creativity, sheer acting ability, courage, originality and artistic integrity have yet to be matched.
There will never never be another Welles...
Back to Prince of Foxes. This is an underrated film. See it for Welles' sake, see it for a Renaissance flash, or just see it for Everett Sloan's eyeballs...
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