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Caligula (1979)

Caligola (original title)
Unrated | | Drama, History | 15 February 1980 (USA)
Details the graphic and shocking, yet undeniably tragic story of Rome's most infamous Caesar, Gaius Germanicus Caligula (Malcolm McDowell).

Director:

Tinto Brass

Writers:

Gore Vidal (adapted from an original screenplay by), Masolino D'Amico
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Popularity
731 ( 132)
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Malcolm McDowell ... Caligula
Teresa Ann Savoy ... Drusilla
Guido Mannari Guido Mannari ... Macro
John Gielgud ... Nerva
Peter O'Toole ... Tiberius
Giancarlo Badessi Giancarlo Badessi ... Claudius
Bruno Brive Bruno Brive ... Gemellus
Adriana Asti ... Ennia
Leopoldo Trieste ... Charicles
Paolo Bonacelli ... Chaerea
John Steiner ... Longinus
Mirella D'Angelo ... Livia (as Mirella Dangelo)
Helen Mirren ... Caesonia
Rick Parets Rick Parets ... Mnester (as Richard Parets)
Paula Mitchell Paula Mitchell ... Subura Singer
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Storyline

The rise and fall of the notorious Roman Emperor Caligula (Malcolm McDowell), showing the violent methods that he employs to gain the throne, and the subsequent insanity of his reign. He gives his horse political office and humiliates and executes anyone who even slightly displeases him. He also sleeps with his sister, organizes elaborate orgies and embarks on a fruitless invasion of Britain before meeting an appropriate end. There are various versions of this movie, ranging from the heavily truncated one hour and thirty-minute version to the legendary two hour and forty-minute hardcore version which leaves nothing to the imagination (though the hardcore scenes were inserted later and did not involve the main cast members). Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The most controversial film of the 20th century is now the most controversial film of the 21st century. See more »

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Italy

Language:

Italian | English

Release Date:

15 February 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Caligula See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$17,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (R-rated) | (recut) | (re-release) | (original)

Sound Mix:

Mono (original release)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.95 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of at least five movies shot during the late 1970s through to the late 1980s in which a character was buried in sand or ground, with only his head shown above ground level. It was Scott Glenn in The Challenge (1982), whose character Rick spends five days in it. The other actors and movies were: various extras in this movie, Ted Danson in Creepshow (1982), Bryan Brown in the 1989 filmed Sweet Talker (1991), and David Bowie in Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983). See more »

Goofs

Caligula is stabbed many times by the guards, yet his robe shows no signs of damage. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Caligula: I have existed from the morning of the world and I shall exist until the last star falls from the night. Although I have taken the form of Gaius Caligula, I am all men as I am no man and therefore I am a God.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Due to numerous pending lawsuits and settlements at the time of the film's release, no one is technically fully credited for writing and directing the finished film. See more »

Alternate Versions

The British DVD (running approx. 90 minutes) appears to be the same as the old American R-rated version. It contains several shots not included in the "complete, unedited and unrated"-US DVD. See more »


Soundtracks

Zolushka
(Cinderella) (uncredited)
Written by Sergei Prokofiev
Conducted by Bruno Nicolai
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A tasteless and overblown farrago despite the presence of great actor as Gielgud, O'Toole, McDowell, and Helen Mirren
6 September 2008 | by Nazi_Fighter_DavidSee all my reviews

The film builds around one of the most notoriously decadent of the Roman emperors, Caligula… The movie covers his rise to power, his four-year rule, and his bloody assassination… His vile deeds include crashing a wedding and sexually abusing the bride and groom, playing erotic fantasies with his sister (who is also his lover) and turning the Imperial Palace into an exclusive brothel…

For a really big-money film, the treatment of the sexual scenes is daringly explicit, but somehow the obsession with it makes the film uneven… It blends very good actors, O'Toole and McDowell, with some simple-minded Penthouse models… The overall effect is disappointing...

Guccione does deserve a hand for the exquisite sets, costumes, production values, and very fine cinematography…


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