7.0/10
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Barabbas (1961)

Not Rated | | Adventure, Biography, Drama | 10 October 1962 (USA)
Barabbas, the criminal that Pontius Pilate induced the populace to vote to set free, so that Christ could be crucified, is haunted by the image of Jesus for the rest of his life.

Director:

Richard Fleischer

Writers:

Christopher Fry (screenplay), Pär Lagerkvist (novel)
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1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anthony Quinn ... Barabbas
Silvana Mangano ... Rachel
Arthur Kennedy ... Pontius Pilate
Katy Jurado ... Sara
Harry Andrews ... Peter
Vittorio Gassman ... Sahak
Norman Wooland Norman Wooland ... Rufio
Valentina Cortese ... Julia
Jack Palance ... Torvald
Ernest Borgnine ... Lucius
Arnoldo Foà ... Joseph of Arimathea (as Arnoldo Foa')
Michael Gwynn ... Lazarus
Laurence Payne ... Disciple
Douglas Fowley ... Vasasio
Guido Celano Guido Celano ... Scorpio
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Storyline

Epic account of the thief Barabbas, who was spared crucifixion when Pilate manipulated the crowd into to pardoning him, rather than Jesus. Struggling with his spirituality, Barabbas goes through many ordeals leading him to the gladiatorial arena, where he tries to win his freedom and confront his inner demons, ultimately becoming a follower of the man who was crucified in his place. Written by Humberto Amador

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The man of violence in whose place Christ died See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 October 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Barabbas See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print) (DVD release)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Mono (Westrex Electric Recording) (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.20 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It was Yul Brynner who was supposed to have the Barrabas role. See more »

Goofs

Torvald never casts his net at his second victim. Instead, he tramples the man beneath his chariot. Yet when he returns to his starting point to prepare to face Barabbas, the net has vanished and he must be supplied with a new one before the action can begin again. See more »

Quotes

Peter: [Arrested for arson, Barabbas has been brought to the dungeons housing the Christians falsely accused of the act] This burning city is no work of ours. This isn't how the new kingdom is going to be made. You were wrong.
Barabbas: Who are you to tell me I'm wrong?
Peter: Many years ago, we spoke together. Do you remember?
Barabbas: No.
Peter: You asked me why I was making a net so far from the sea.
Barabbas: Jerusalem. The street of the potters.
Peter: You were as mistaken then as you are again now.
Female Christian: We didn't set fire to the city.
Male Christian: You've done the...
[...]
See more »

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User Reviews

"The film that stopped the sun"
30 October 2003 | by uds3See all my reviews

How incredibly appropriate if not downright eerie that the sun should turn on a full eclipse during the filming of BARABBAS that was captured by the Technirama 70 cameras for the crucifixion scene.

Arguably the "forgotten epic" when talk of the 60's blockbusters brings inevitably mention of BEN HUR, KING OF KINGS, FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, SPARTACUS, LAWRENCE OF ARABIA, GENGHIS KHAN, CLEOPATRA, SODOM AND GOMORRAH, etc. Many see in this film an individual depth and emotion, lacking in other such works. Quinn in fact brings (despite the poetic license taken with historical confirmation) to Barabbas, a portrayal of a man tortured by his past, his reason to still be alive and his destiny. From the claustrophobic escape from the sulphur mines to his gladiatorial deeds in the arena, Barrabas is a driven man of open-ended religious conviction. He embraces Christianity but does he understand it? He saw Christ die in his place and lived his life to find out why!

Palance whose face has been his career, was the ONLY choice as Torvald the head gladiator who lives only to kill! It was one of his best ever roles.

I saw this film in London at its premiere in 1962. It received luke-warm critical reception at the time but had a successful run in the West End of some six months or so. Has had far less screening on television and cable than other epics of its ilk which is a pity as it had a lot to offer the discriminating viewer.


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