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Damon and Pythias (1962)

Il tiranno di Siracusa (original title)
Pythias, a liberal Athenian who believes all men are brothers, is condemned to death by Dionysus, the tyrant of Syracuse, who finds this view dangerous. However, Dionysus allows Pythias to ... See full summary »

Director:

Curtis Bernhardt

Writers:

Samuel Marx (story), Samuel Marx (screenplay) | 5 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Guy Williams ... Damon
Don Burnett ... Pythias
Ilaria Occhini Ilaria Occhini ... Nerissa
Liana Orfei ... Adriana
Marina Berti ... Mereka - Nerissa's Friend
Arnoldo Foà ... Dionysius the Tyrant
Carlo Giustini Carlo Giustini ... Cariso
Aldo Silvani Aldo Silvani ... Patriarch
Andrea Bosic Andrea Bosic ... Arcanos
Maurizio Baldoni Maurizio Baldoni ... Dionysius the Younger
Franco Fantasia Franco Fantasia ... Rumius - the Fencing Master
Osvaldo Ruggieri Osvaldo Ruggieri ... Demetrius - Nerissa's Brother
Lawrence Montaigne ... Flute Player
Enrico Glori Enrico Glori ... Nikos
Gianni Bonagura Gianni Bonagura ... Phylemon
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Storyline

Pythias, a liberal Athenian who believes all men are brothers, is condemned to death by Dionysus, the tyrant of Syracuse, who finds this view dangerous. However, Dionysus allows Pythias to return to Athens to visit his ailing wife with the understanding he will then come back to face his punishment. Damon, a friend of Pythias, volunteers to be a hostage to guarantee Pythias's return. Dionysius doesn't expect Pythias to keep his end of the bargain, thus exposing the falsity of his beliefs. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

World-famed story of friendship and fury!

Genres:

Adventure

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

June 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Damon and Pythias See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)| Color (Technicolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The tyrant featured in the film is a historical figure: Dionysius I of Syracuse (reigned c. 405-367 BC). He was a military commander who seized power in a coup. He was one of the most famous tyrants in Antiquity, known for his conquests in Sicily and Southern Italy, his inconclusive wars against Carthage, and his foundation of new cities (such as Ancona). See more »

Connections

Follows Damon and Pythias (1914) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Too good for its own good
12 September 2002 | by dinky-4See all my reviews

While it looks like just another of those "sword and sandal" movies from the 1960s, this one has ambitions. Too bad. Instead of being a snappy, unpretentious piece of entertainment with beefcakey guys and bosomy babes racing their way through an action-filled plot, we get a long, slow, deliberate, almost thoughtful re-telling of the Damon and Pythias myth. Strange, you don't think you're going to miss the fire-breathing monster and the scantily-clad virgin chained to a rock and the bare-chested hero stretched between two chariots, but darn it, when these ingredients aren't present, you miss them!

The problems probably began with the choice of director, Curtis Bernhardt. He was fine for MGM's women's pictures such as "Beau Brummell" and "Interrupted Melody," but he's not well suited to this kind of material. Guy Williams isn't the right choice to play Damon, either. He's supposed to be one of those lovable rogue types such as Burt Lancaster or even Kirk Douglas used to play, but he just can't bring this off.

Don Burnett does better as Pythias. He plays the quiet, serious one and though the "mismatched buddies" formula usually works, it stumbles here because there simply isn't much chemistry between the two leads. And, curiously enough, neither of the two men gets to take his shirt off, not even in the climactic scene in which Damon is bound to a pillar for his impending execution. What's a sword-and-sandal movie without a generous helping of pecs?


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