A demobilized centurion returns home to Pompeii to find his father murdered by a gang of black-hooded Christian robbers that terrorizes the city and he decides to investigate the matter while the nearby volcano threatens to erupt.
Antigonus, archon of Corinth, wants to build a magnificent temple dedicated to the goddess Aphrodite, for which the people are oppressed by new and very high taxes. The sculptor Demetrius, ... See full summary »
In Mexico at the time of the Revolution, Juan, the leader of a bandit family, meets John Mallory, an IRA explosives expert on the run from the British. Seeing John's skill with explosives, Juan decides to persuade him to join the bandits in a raid on the great bank of Mesa Verde. John in the meantime has made contact with the revolutionaries, and intends to use his dynamite in their service.
Mount Vesuvius looms ominously over the doomed city of Pompeii, a city in turmoil. Its citizens are being terrorized by a group of black-hooded thieves on the rampage, murdering entire families, and looting their homes. Strangely, they're also leaving a calling card. The sign of the Christian cross is being left as a remainder of who has carried out these terrible acts. On his way into the city, Centurion Glaucus Lito, is looking forward to seeing his father after completing his military service. When he arrives at his father's house he finds it in ruins and is told that his father has been murdered by the same masked raiders menacing the city. Glaucus begins to make enquiries, aided by the help of his friends, but begins to doubt that the peaceful Christian community are responsible for these murders. He soon finds out that the situation is a lot more complicated than he originally thought. After more extensive enquiries he discovers a conspiracy within the political and religious ...Written by
The material spewed from Vesuvius plunged the city into darkness and many of the people of Pompeii died from the gases and especially from breathing in the volcanic ash. However, this would not have been visually dramatic. See more »
This appears to be Sergio Leone's first film, and as such it is interesting enough. He made a few films like this in the beginning, another was "The Colossus of Rhodes" which was even worse, and already here you find all the worst sides of the director, the sadistic penchant for meaningless cruelty, the crude characterizations and as much brutal violence as possible.
The plot is completely changed from the famous novel of Bulwer-Lytton's, there is no mention of christianity in the novel, while here it is used to make another sort of "Quo Vadis?" Nothing wrong with that, the plot is actually quite interesting and well thought out, but it's the character of Julia that ruins the film - she is utterly unconvincing. Fernando Rey as Arbaces the scheming villain is good enough, and Steve Reeves has not yet developed into the dummy he was to turn into by too much muscular performances. He was no Charlton Heston, and his mere presence in a film ensures its second hand qualities.
The film was given a generous budget, though, which was used more than well. The epic apocalyptic scenes of the volcano eruption and the overwhelming catastrophe of the downfall of the city are rendered in great detail and very convincing. For Sergio Leone, it was not bad for a start.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this