El Cid

El Cid

DVD - 2008
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Eleventh-century Spain is divided into Christian kingdoms and Moorish strongholds. The young Rodrigo Diaz de Bivar, who has been dubbed El Cid by his followers, vows to see his country at peace, free from the invader. Showing clemency to some emirs, he faces treason charges at court. His accuser, Gomez, father of his fiancee, Chimene, dies in the resulting duel. Chimene's avowed vengeance plot fails and Rodrigo is given her hand. When King Ferdinand dies, his kingdom is divided among his three children. Sancho challenges the decision and imprisons Alfonso, who is released by El Cid. Then Sancho is assassinated by an African war-lord. Alfonso now claims that throne, too, and exiles El Cid. Chimene realizes the nobility of her husband and joins him. The years pass and El Cid becomes a revered warrior, but refuses to aid Alfonso. He lays siege to Valencia, catapulting food into its starving garrison. The Valencians kill their evil ruler and offer the crown to El Cid. He sends it to Alfonso, who rushes to his side. But El Cid has been hit by a stray arrow. Attended by Chimene, he hides the wound from his men and prepares a final bid to drive the Moors from Spain.


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EuSei Dec 17, 2015

Heston is absolutely wonderful as el Cid Campeador. Loren is gorgeous as his beloved Ximena. This is one of my favorite movies; I love the strong main character—I love strong men, they don’t instill fear in me, but admiration—and Heston’s Rodrigo is pure masculinity. The end is so touching and only Heston could have played the part; we no longer have any male actor who could play el Cid! NOTICE: Attempts to censor (“Report this”) my comments will be fiercely fought under the aegis of American Libraries’ beloved principles: Freedom of Speech, Freedom to Read, Intellectual Freedom.

7duffy Aug 16, 2015

Decent epic, well shot, but I agree with a previous reviewer, it's way too long. The story did not hold interest for the film's 3 hour length.

Apr 30, 2014

Great DVD set with lots of extras. This movie has one of the great endings that I should not spoil. Some parts of the film drag and seem overlong, but there is a lot going for it in general. There is a very great jousting scene.

May 14, 2012

Colossal 1961 historical drama. Magnificent scenery and a massive scope: cost - $6,200,000; 7,000 extras; 10,000 costumes; 35 ships; 50 outsize engines of medieval war; and four of the noblest old castles in Spain: Ampudia, Belmonte, Peñíscola and Torrelobaton. Unfortunately, the story itself was somewhat boring and stiff. Writing, directing, both (yup). Just dull. Sophia Loren was truly breathtaking, and manly man Chuck Heston did the best with what he had, but effectively three long yawning hours of my life I'll never get back.

Mar 10, 2012

Grand opera, without the singing. If there had been more music, it might have covered for the stilted dialogue. It sounds like it was translated from English, to Spanish (possibly for Franco's censors), and then back to English. This is a shame, because El Cid has lot to offer: sets, costumes, and scenery out of a Medieval Book of Hours, exciting, authentic action scenes, and a true-ish story about Christians and Muslims uniting against fanaticism. If you think CGI is good enough for crowd scenes, El Cid is here to tell you it is not. Sophia Loren and Charlton Heston are the prettiest screen couple, ever. Too bad they hated each other. EXTRAS: biographies of the producer, director, and score composer, which are at least as interesting as the film itself.

Feb 27, 2011

Though there are some frivilous acts of heroism, it's a great movie.


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May 15, 2012

Ben Yussuf: "The Prophet, has commanded us, to rule the world. Where in all your land of Spain, is the glory of Allah? When men speak of you they speak of poets, musicmakers, doctors, scientists. Where are your warriors?!? You dare to call youselves sons of the Prophet?!? You have become women!!! Burn your books! Make warriors of your poets! Let your doctors invent new poisons for our arrows. Let your scientists invent new war machines! And then, kill! Burn! Infidels live on your frontiers. Encourage them to kill each other. And when they are weak and torn, I will sweep up from Africa, and thus the empire of the One God, the true God Allah, will spread, first across Spain, then across Europe, then the whole world!"

May 15, 2012

El Cid: "People of Valencia! ...I bring you bread!"


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