In an atmosphere of political tension when the French still control Algiers, an Algerian is killed on the beach and a French man who has lived in Algiers all his life is arrested for the ... See full summary »
Historical evocation of Ludwig, king of Bavaria, from his crowning in 1864 until his death in 1886, as a romantic hero. Fan of Richard Wagner, betrayed by him, in love with his cousin Elisabeth of Austria, abandonned by her, tormented by his homosexuality, he will little by little slip towards madness.Written by
Romy Schneider only agreed to reprise the trademark role of her youth as Empress Elisabeth of Austria if the role would avoid all the usual clichés associated with the character and she would be allowed to portray Elisabeth as the cynical and disillusioned woman Elisabeth was known to be historically, though she did concede to put famous diamond decorations in her hair for one short scene. See more »
But it's easier to fight a duel than to write a letter.
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The recent Fox Lorber video release runs approx. 236 minutes. It was listed, in the opening credits as the "versione integrale" in Italian, produced with the association of RAI. At the end of the film, it credits the dubbers. See more »
After "Death Of Venice" , this is the second Time I have Encountered Visconti, again its Self- obsessed protagonist captured me. I need more background information about Ludwig II, the mad king of Bavaria. But as far as this film, it solidify Visconti's status of a unique director, a master of gilded resplendence.
The film has extravagant settings which could easily amaze everyone in spite of different backgrounds. I have to say only Visconti has this privilege as he has "blue blood" running inside his veins.
Ludwig is a proud black swan, noble and pure, maybe reflects the image of Visconti himself. His tragedy is that he is not suitable to be a king, he pursues art more than politics, and his homosexuality does offend some people. At his position his demise is destined and nothing he could do to avoid it, it's so cruel to see how he suffers all the way, the ultimate death is the best way to save his dignity as a human being.
The film is almost 4 hours, I have to watch it separately, which helps a lot to digest it. And Helmut Berger is so vulnerable and convincing in his role as Ludwig, plus at that time he was also Visconti's muse. I wonder how come he hasn't become more famous as he unfurls a unisex fascination from this film even could defeat Alain Delon at his peak youth.
Watching Visconti's film is a totally different experience from watching Antonioni's. They both excel over each other in their own ways, by far I still can not figure out I like whose films more, need to see more films from both of them.
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