6.7/10
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A Dream of Passion (1978)

Kravgi gynaikon (original title)
R | | Drama | August 1978 (USA)
Melina Mercouri plays an actress who is attempting a comeback with a staging of the Greek tragedy "Medea" (about a woman who kills her children) in her native Greece. As a publicity stunt, ... See full summary »

Director:

Jules Dassin

Writers:

Jules Dassin, Euripides (play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Melina Mercouri ... Maya / Medea
Ellen Burstyn ... Brenda Collins
Andréas Voutsinas ... Kostas
Despo Diamantidou ... Maria
Dimitris Papamichael ... Dimitris / Jason
Giannis Voglis Giannis Voglis ... Edward
Faidon Georgitsis ... Ronny
Betty Valassi ... Margaret
Andreas Filippides ... Stathis
Irene Emirza Irene Emirza ... Diana
Panos Papaioannou Panos Papaioannou ... Manos
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kostas Arzoglou ... Bible Student
Savvas Axiotis Savvas Axiotis ... Soundman
Katerina Bourlou Katerina Bourlou ... Medea Chorus
Foteini Filosofou ... Medea Chorus
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Storyline

Melina Mercouri plays an actress who is attempting a comeback with a staging of the Greek tragedy "Medea" (about a woman who kills her children) in her native Greece. As a publicity stunt, she arranges a meeting with an American woman (Ellen Burstyn) who is serving a prison term for killing her own children. Features Mercouri performing "Medea" in the original, intercut with Burstyn narrating her crime.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Greece | Switzerland | USA

Language:

English | Greek

Release Date:

August 1978 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Dream of Passion See more »

Filming Locations:

Greece

Company Credits

Production Co:

Bren, Melina Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)
See full technical specs »
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User Reviews

Ms. Medea!
19 April 2004 | by dwingroveSee all my reviews

Early on in A Dream of Passion, the embattled Greek diva played by Melina Mercouri is accused of "reducing the tragedy of Medea to the level of Ms. Magazine!" Blindly oblivious to his own warning, writer/director Jules Dassin goes on to do precisely that for the next hour-and-a-half. The result is one of those irresistibly awful films that contrive, somehow, to be more compelling than most good ones.

Returning to her native Greece to shoot a film of Euripides' tragedy, Mercouri's jet-setting grande dame meets and becomes obsessed with a dowdy, Bible-spouting American housewife (Ellen Burstyn) who committed the crime of Medea in real life. In other words, she murdered her three children as a way to punish her unfaithful husband. As the two women meet, merge and swap identities, Dassin tries hard to navigate the tortuously trendy Life-Or-Art labyrinth so beloved of Ingmar Bergman and Carlos Saura.

Unfortunately, Dassin is far too lumpish and literal-minded a director for such high-falutin head games. Mercouri flings herself headlong into her role as a glamorous tragedienne. It is, truly, a piece of Acting in the Grand Manner. Burstyn, predictably, is much more subtle - or about as subtle as a deranged fundamentalist child-murderer can possibly be. Alas, the acting styles of the two ladies are so diametrically opposed, it's impossible to picture them in the same universe, never mind the same film.

No matter. A Dream of Passion did hold me riveted throughout. If only for the mind-blowing, jaw-dropping pretentiousness on display!


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