Epic

Albert Boadella & Mercè Vilaret – La odisea (1976)

A little-known Spanish take on Homer’s Odyssey. Read More »

Rudolph Maté – The 300 Spartans (1962)

A colorful action film about the Battle Of Thermopylae in 480 B.C. in which the Spartans defend themselves for a Persian invasion against overwhelming odds. King Leodinas (Richard Egan) rallies the locals to stop the attack of thousands of plundering Persian invaders led by evil King Xerxes (David Farrar). Sir Ralph Richardson as Themistocles of Athens leads the international cast this the spectacular cinematic conflict that has more emphasis on action rather than historical accuracy.
— Dan Pavlides Read More »

Jerzy Hoffman – Potop AKA The Deluge (1974)

Nominated for a Best Foreign Film Oscar in 1974, this follow-up to WITH FIRE AND SWORD is set in the 17th century during the Swedish invasion and occupation of Poland, known as The Deluge, which left the country in ruins.
Based on a novel by Henryk Sienkiewicz, Deluge follows the romance between a violent soldier and the young woman who tries to tame him. Read More »

Philippe Ducrest – La duchesse d’Avila (1973)

“The Manuscript Found in Saragossa collects intertwining stories, all of them set in whole or in part in Spain, with a large and colorful cast of Gypsies, thieves, inquisitors, a cabbalist, a geometer, the cabbalist’s beautiful sister, two Moorish princesses (Emina and Zubeida) and others that the brave, perhaps foolhardy, Walloon Guard Alphonse van Worden meets, imagines or reads about in the Sierra Morena mountains of 18th-century Spain while en route to Madrid. Recounted to the narrator over the course of sixty-six days, the novel’s stories quickly overshadow van Worden’s frame story. Read More »

David Lean – Doctor Zhivago (1965)

Eastman Museum writes:
An epic romance of doomed love, Doctor Zhivago is set amidst the tumultuous years encompassing World War I, the Russian Revolution of 1917, and the Russian Civil War. Yuri Zhivago (Omar Sharif) is a married physician and poet who falls madly in love with Lara (Julie Christie), a nurse who is also married. The tangled epic of love and war “did nothing less than re-create Moscow and its countryside,” according to Roger Ebert. “Doctor Zhivago,” Ebert continues, “believes that history should have a lot of room for personal feelings . . . the individual over the state, the heart over the mind.” Banned in the Soviet Union for decades, Doctor Zhivago won five of the ten Academy Awards for which it was nominated and has continued to garner acclaim ever since. Read More »

Anthony Mann – El Cid (1961)

Synopsis:
Epic film of the legendary Spanish hero, Rodrigo Diaz (“El Cid” to his followers), who, without compromising his strict sense of honour, still succeeds in taking the initiative and driving the Moors from Spain. Read More »

Kihachi Okamoto – Sengoku yaro AKA Warring Clans (1963)

In this Japanese samurai adventure, a brave, highly principled warrior resigns his post as a body guard to the head of a powerful clan after he learns that his employers have been smuggling arms to the enemy. The remaining samurai try in vain to coerce him back, but their efforts are thwarted by crooked warriors who launch an attack.
The sword fights are especially exciting. Read More »