Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Colossus of Rhodes|
Actors: Rory Calhoun, Lea Massari, Georges Marchal, Conrado San Martín, Ángel Aranda
Director: Sergio Leone
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy
No Description Available. Genre: Cult Rating: NR Release Date: 26-JUN-2007 Media Type: DVD
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Simon Davis | 07/24/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Director Sergio Leone is of course much better known for his famous westerns of the 1960's and '70's however what we have here is his first official directing effort in one of the bigger budgeted films in the early 1960's cycle of "Epic", productions. Usually set in ancient Greece or Rome, here the setting is the beautiful island of Rhodes with the plot revolving around the famous statue or "Colossus" that stood astride the harbour in ancient times and after its premature demise courtesy of an earthquake became one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. "The Colossus of Rhodes", has been the Italian epic I have long wanted to see and Warner Bros. have done a wonderful job on presenting it now in all its original glory on DVD for the first time. While certainly not on the level of "Ben-Hur", "Cleopatra", or "The Fall of the Roman Empire", in terms of overall scope and majesty, it does still have much to offer the viewer. The film is rich in beautiful cinematography highlighting attractive locations photographed in Spain, stunning sets and costumes, excellent swordplay and plenty of the necessary intrigue, and best of all the eye catching recreation of the legendary giant statue known through history as the "Colossus of Rhodes". Misplaced or I should say also miscast, leading man Rory Calhoun continued the early 1960's tradition of Italian and Spanish film makers importing second string American leading men to star in their epic productions in the hope of widening their film's distribution potential. However Calhoun, best remembered as a cowboy star in the 1950's looks badly out of place in the setting of ancient Rhodes and he defiantely doesn't look comfortable in the Toga-like costumes he wears in the story. I still feel original choice for the role, John Derek who excelled as Joshua in Cecil De Mille's classic "The Ten Commandments", would have been better suited for the part of Greek Military hero Darios who gets caught up in the intrigue of ancient Rhodes just prior to the devastating earthquake that toppled the world famous statue at the film's fiery climax."
Robert C. Cumbow | Seattle, WA USA | 07/31/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"COLOSSUS OF RHODES provides a good look at Sergio Leone's roots--and the roots of the Italian Western--in the peplum (or "sword and sandal") genre that dominated popular Italian film in the late 50s and early 60s, just before the western boom. There is little in this film to suggest the master stylist that Leone would become just a few years later. But it's one of the better peplum films, with high production values that look especially good on this transfer. And there is one delightful shot that seems to prefigure, in a comic way, Leone's later attraction to extreme closeups of eyeballs."
Leone's greatest work! Not really, but still worthwhile...
Grigory's Girl | NYC | 07/16/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"For the longest time, I never thought I would actually see this film. This is Sergio Leone's first official film as director, and it's been notoriously hard to find in any home video format. I was plesantly surprised when I found out that it was officially released, so I rented it immediately.
Leone started as an assistant director on many Hollywood productions that shot in Italy in the 1950's, and many of them were part of the Roman epic cycle. This film follows in that vain (even though it's on Rhodes, not Rome), and it's a decent "Roman" epic film, nothing more. You would have to be clairvoyant to think that Leone would go on to direct masterpieces after this film, though. Some of the action scenes are awkwardly choreographed, and much of the acting is rather formless (the film has that awkward dubbing best known in Italian films), or it's so over the top. Many have said Rory Calhoun was miscast here, but I thought he was OK. He wasn't great, but it didn't bother me that much. He's kind of endearingly goofy, like he knows he really shouldn't be in the film, but he's enjoying himself anyway. The original leading man, John Derek, was fired early in the production because Leone was convinced that he was trying to steal his job (John Derek did go on to be a director, but his films were horrible). It's kind of fun to see Lea Masari in this film. The previous year she played Anna, the woman who disappears in L'avventura. Maybe this is where Anna ended up.
There is some good here. Leone's framing is pretty good, the crowd scenes are well handled, the plot twists are surprisingly good for a film like this, the inside of the Collusus is cool, and the film is never boring. It's definitely worth watching once, just don't expect the beauty and mastery of Leone's best films. It's not a great debut or anything, but if you're a Leone fan (like me), you should check it out nevertheless."