Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Photo of the Day

Rosanna Schiaffino and Sydney Poitier in THE LONG SHIPS

The Arabian part of the film, with Rosanna and Poitier, are the best parts and I wished there had been more. It's great to see Poitier as a "villain" in an adventure film. Richard Widmark, on the other hand, is totally miscast as a Viking and the film spends most of its time with him and his screaming crew. The production design is quite good, including the widescreen shots of the boats. The score was very repetitive and got on my nerves very quickly.

When I watched the movie, which is a tad overly exuberant, my fondness for HERCULES with Steve Reeves grew that much more. With THE LONG SHIPS, you basically have almost all the same ingredients but with the backing of a big Hollywood studio budget and it's not even as effective or memorable as the modest Italian one directed by Pietro Francisci.

Also the story reminded me of THE PRIDE AND THE PASSION starring Cary Grant, Sophia Loren and Frank Sinatra. Considered a big fiasco, one would have assumed that Hollywood would have avoided back then in doing another story about a motley crew transporting a big object across long distances.


S.R.Orsulak said...

I have to disagree with you on this movie and I really enjoyed it. Maybe it was because I saw it in the theater on the big screen and I thought it was a lot of fun. When you entered the theater to your seat the entrance music was great and it's a shame it was never included with the DVD. I also like PRIDE AND THE PASSION, though I think Sinatra was very miscast, but the movie was a lot of fun and spectacular.

PEPLUM cinema said...

I'm not saying it's bad. The biggest liabilities were Richard Widmark and not enough time in Arabia and the music was a bit repetitive, certainly at the end, but aside from that it was good. Not great. Just good. While HERCULES is magic on a small budget. It's just an observation: LONG SHIPS had everything that HERCULES didn't have (big cast, budget, locations, etc) but was merely good.

Also I didn't dislike it because it reminded me of PRIDE AND THE PASSION, which I like even if it's a bit too long. My comment was that I was surprised Hollywood made another film like Pride and Passion after it was considered a flop.