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Galileo (1975)

PG | | Biography, Drama | 27 May 1976 (UK)
This biopic is about Galileo Galilei, the seventeenth century Italian who laid the foundations of modern science. Galileo made himself one of the world's first telescopes and discovered the... See full summary »

Director:

Joseph Losey

Writers:

Barbara Bray (adapted for the screen), Bertolt Brecht (play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Topol ... Galileo Galilei
Edward Fox ... Cardinal Inquisitor
Colin Blakely ... Priuli
Georgia Brown ... Ballad Singer's Wife
Clive Revill ... Ballad Singer
Margaret Leighton ... Elderly Court Lady
John Gielgud ... The Old Cardinal
Michael Gough ... Sagredo
Michael Lonsdale ... Cardinal Barberini (later Pope Urban VIII)
Richard O'Callaghan ... Fulganzio
Tim Woodward ... Ludovico Marsili
Judy Parfitt ... Angelica Sarti
John McEnery ... Federzoni
Patrick Magee ... Cardinal Bellarmin
Mary Larkin ... Virginia
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Storyline

This biopic is about Galileo Galilei, the seventeenth century Italian who laid the foundations of modern science. Galileo made himself one of the world's first telescopes and discovered the moons of Jupiter. He supported Copernicus' theory that the Earth revolved around the Sun. This brought him in conflict with the Catholic Church. By threatening him with torture, the Church forced him to recant his views in front of a tribunal, and sentenced him to house arrest. However, Galileo's trials and theories inspired others like Sir Isaac Newton and Johannes Kepler to prove that the Earth was not the center of the universe. Some years ago, the Pope accepted that Earth does revolve around the Sun and issued a rare apology for what the Church had done to Galileo. The Catholic Church recanted. Written by <sundar1@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 May 1976 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Galileo Galilei See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Gough is nowhere to be found in the casting interviews and ideas lists of Sagredo kept by the B.F.I. Special collection. See more »

Quotes

Andrea Sarti: [upon Galileo's recantation] Unhappy is the land that has no heroes.
Galileo Galilei: Incorrect. Unhappy is the land that *needs* a hero.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Zomergasten: Episode #23.1 (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Delayed by HUAC
26 January 2019 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This fine work by Berthold Brecht and directed by Joseph Losey is brought to us by about a 20 year delay period. That was because of the House Un-American Activities Committee and the blacklisting of both.

Brecht kind of, sort of made his case for HUAC as he went back to East Germany where he was acclaimed a cultural icon. Joe Losey took off for Great Britain where he worked for the most part until his death.

You can see why the mossbacks of HUAC thought Galileo by Brecht was highly subversive stuff. Question church authority and by implication the state because religion was established. No more so than in Italy and its many Catholic city/states.

Galileo Galilei scientist/engineer was a popular well respected fellow who got a hold of a spyglass invented by the Dutchman Hans Lippershey and saw the possibilities for it in astronomy. Already a believer in the theory advanced by Copernicus about the sun being a center of the universe. The telescope allowed Galileo to observe and make more findings. If the Earth is the center of things than what are those bodies orbiting Jupiter for instance?

The Roman Catholic now engaged in a counter attack against all that Protestant type heresy took a dim view of this stuff. Galileo got vigorously questioned for these theories.

Israeli actor Topol plays the bluff and hearty Galileo. He's a man used to his creature comforts and not built for martyrdom as is shown in the play.

The fine cast Losey assembles includes Clive Revill and Georgia Brown as cabaret singers, Michael Lonsdale as Pope Urban, and Edward Fox as the Cardinal Inquisitor. John Gielgud has a great cameo as a cardinal who is beside himself with indignation that anyone would question the workings of the universe, their universe.

Galileo's epitaph despite his failure to martyr himself is the best of all. No amount of proclamations from the state or the pulpit will change the way the universe works.

That IS subversive stuff.


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