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Lola Montes
Lola Montes
Actors: Martine Carol, Peter Ustinov, Anton Walbrook, Henri Guisol, Lise Delamare
Director: Max Ophüls
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
NR     1999     1hr 56min

Max Ophüls explores the scandalous life of dancer and courtesan Lola Montes with a bittersweet empathy that turns melodrama into a tragic melancholy masterpiece. Using the theatrical re-creation of Lola's life in a big-top...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Martine Carol, Peter Ustinov, Anton Walbrook, Henri Guisol, Lise Delamare
Director: Max Ophüls
Creators: Peter Ustinov, Max Ophüls, Annette Wademant, Claude Heymann, Cécil Saint-Laurent, Franz Geiger, Jacques Natanson
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Love & Romance
Studio: Fox Lorber
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Letterboxed - Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 02/23/1999
Original Release Date: 01/01/1955
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/1955
Release Year: 1999
Run Time: 1hr 56min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Letterboxed
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: French
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Fox=crafty, sly, or clever person, but...
philrob | New Zealand | 06/16/2003
(1 out of 5 stars)

"...Fox-Lorber can be credited with sly only, for releasing this lack of quality even Madacy would be ashamed of.
The 1 star is because of this release. Maybe they don't know yet that DVD technology allow for subtitles as a choice option, and maybe their budget was too short to get them right (one quarter is accurate, one quarter is approximate, one quarter is absolute fancy, and one quarter has escaped translation. But the worse is the (absence of) quality of the picture which is perfectly matched by a botched soundtrack.
Until Criterion or some real professional in DVD business will take care of getting this released as it should be, better to avoid this one."
eg001 | New York, NY USA | 04/03/1999
(1 out of 5 stars)

"I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw "Lola Montes", had made its way to DVD. I was so thrilled I couldn't get my money out fast enough. Of course, I took for granted that the negative had been restored and the telecine transfer had been made from a new 35mm interpositive on the Philips "Spirit". I also took for granted that the best audio facility would have been employed re-record the track of a film this important cinema history. Well, I was wrong on both counts and badly wrong at that. It's almost as though someone found a 16mm print that had been left outside in a garbage dump for twenty years and mastered it rather than go through the expense of restoring this masterpiece. It is simply the worst looking print and worst sounding track I have ever experienced on VHS or DVD. If you're hoping to see one of the world's great films beautifully restored and re-recorded, look somewhere else."
Poor video quailty
Chun Hei Cheung | New York, NY | 05/25/1999
(3 out of 5 stars)

"The movie itself was great, but the transfer is extremly diaappointing, considering that Fox Lorber acquired it recently after Home Vision Cinema lost the video rights. Fox Lorber could have gone through new tranfers and a color and sound restoration, as they reportedly done with their new Truffaut releases on video and DVD (or it could've done by the French and picked up by convience and after Criterion lost their rights to the films, anyway, Fox Lorber claimed to have done "new translation").The video and sound quailty is extremely poor that colors changed throughout a scene and the audio is quite low accompanied by tics and hisses. Fox Lorber did a disservice to everyone since this is the one and only source many of us have to watch the film. (As a side note, the director's cut, with a running time around 140 minutes, is rarely seen after it was butchered for a shorter running time since the production company was on the verge of bankruptcy as the movie failed to make any profit. This was done, sadly, when Ophuls was on his deathbed)."
A Female Casanova -- or so she appears
Doug Anderson | Miami Beach, Florida United States | 11/25/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Other women in the same time period became famous for their artistic talents(George Sand for one) but Lola Montes had no real talent and so she made her mark by being beautiful and aggressive. These qualities won her many admirers and at least two famous lovers: the King of Bavaria and Franz Liszt. Its a complicated story though and one with many ironies. When Lola was younger her mother wanted to marry her off to a wealthy older banker but Lola refused and instead ran away with a young man who ended up being a drunk and a philanderer. We never really see Lola's transformation from young innocent girl into woman of the world but she makes the transition so completely that nothing of the little girl remains in the woman that Lola Montes becomes. The way Carol Martine plays her we assume that either Lola Montes has no emotions or that she has them but has learned to keep them to herself. Either way it seems what Lola really loves is a man who can take care of her in style and so the real love of her life is not Franz Liszt who she grows bored with but rather the King of Bavaria who sets her up in a little palace of her own which seems perfect for her (an icy palace in an icy land for the icy Lola). Later Lola will refer to this as the happiest period in her life but we are likely to attribute this happiness not to the elderly and deaf King of Bavaria himself but to the palace he provided her with. This was the one time in her life she had a home. When the stability of Bavaria is threatened by revolution she is forced out of her palace. Outside of Bavaria she is destitute and she has nothing to sell -- except her reputation. Though penniless shes now become famous or infamous throughout Europe and so when Ustinov offers her a salary for merely telling her tale she has little choice but to accept. In the 21st Century we are so used to seeing how people capitalize on scandal that its fascinating to see a nineteenth-century version of this phenomena. Its also fascinating to see how Lola Montes must play "Lola Montes". There is a huge difference between what really happened and what the public wants to hear happened and so the story that Ustinov tells each night is just a fiction designed to give the crowd what it wants. Lola herself just goes through the motions of playing this fictive "Lola" to make a buck. In our media savvy era we might have a hard time seeing Lola Montes as a victim, rather we are likely to see her as someone cashing in on her "fame". Lola is ultimately a victim however in the same way Jay Gatsby was a victim -- they are victims of others misperceptions of them. The misperception so often repeated takes on a larger than life reality while the real life is buried in the shadows. This is the tragedy of fame, this is the tragedy of Lola. It is perhaps the most fascinating study of personality of its era. And one that speaks to our era most pointedly."