- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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The Most Underrated Historical Epic of All Time
- John Weber
While a success on initial release, "El Cid" in modern time has reached the point of obscurity. Not being nearly as well remembered as other genre contemporaries. Particularly "The Ten Commandments", "Ben-Hur", "Spartacus", and "Lawrence of Arabia". And in my humble opinion, it is just as good as any of those films. And has actually become my favorite of the epic films Charlton Heston did at the height of his career. Yes, that is including what is arguably his most popular film "Ben-Hur". Charlton Heston had one of the most commanding presences of any actor to live, and leads an intriguing cast of characters in an epic and emotional journey. He is perfectly bought as a leader who could inspire so many to follow him and become a legend who in the end dies for his cause. And the supporting cast surrounding him also make for a group of really compelling characters. Such as Chinea and her torn loyalty between the man she loves and the father whom he killed, the honorable Al-Mu'tamin who touched by Rodrigo's mercy becomes his ally, the relatively short on screen time though quite menacing and memorable Ben Yusuf, or the at first treacherous but then redemptive Count Ordonez who vies for Chimena himself, or the internally fighting royal children of King Ferdinand and how they connect to each of the other characters. Such as the sultry and manipulative Urracas who at first targets her affections on Rodrigo, and her care for her brother to incestuous proportions Alfonso both being genuine but also controlling. Alfonso himself having a character arc of having to master himself, including his own prejudices and petty grudges, to become the king Spain truly needs. In the end he's inspired by Rodrigo's consistent honor and loyalty and redeems himself by rushing to Rodrigo's aid during the final battle at Valencia. As usual Miklos Rozsa provides a beautiful score that matches the film's feel perfectly, and the battle scenes are all rousing and exciting.
When Movies Were Movies
- Bryan Thomas
El Cid is a must-see, not only for fans of the epic genre, but for all sincere film buffs. El Cid was released on the coattails of Ben-Hur which was a rough act for any film maker to follow. But Director Anthony Mann gave it his best shot. Miklos Rozsa's score (his personal favorite) is brilliant, and it rises to the occasion during the final scene which remains one of the most memorable endings in cinematic history! I envy anyone who gets to see it for the first time. It's definitely an "Oh, Wow!" moment. It's a shame the movie has not received more TV exposure over the many years: A couple of times on one of the networks circa 1970 and again as a special broadcast on NBC in 1994. I would make it an Essential on TCM. The tracking shots during the battle sequences are stunning. The second unit work of Yakima Canutt (Ben-Hur chariot race) is superb. Had William Wyler directed El Cid, Heston's performance may have been a little less wooden. Wyler perfected Heston's Judah Ben-Hur as opposed to De Mille's direction of a rather stiff Moses. Regardless, El Cid belongs on the Mt. Rushmore of film epics. In today's world of quick edits and CG, it's one of those rare big budget cast-of-thousands costume spectaculars you will never see made again!
Um filme épico excelente. Com uma meticulosa reconstituição de época e ótimas cenas de batalhas. Charlton Heston e Sophia Loren estão ótimos. Um classico inesquecível
Sweeping spectacular saga
- Mr D
This LONG movie epitomizes the sweeping historical saga so popular in the 50's & 60's. It is a remarkable love story and maintains reasonable historical accuracy (my wife & I have just been reading about this period of Spanish history in Susan Wise Bauer's History of the Medieval World). Charlton Heston really brings El Cid to life, and Sophia Loren is extraordinary as his on-again, off-again lover - although I understand they were not exactly enamored of each other offscreen. I am not sure how younger viewers, raised on a different style of filmmaking, will take to this one - there are battle scenes as epic & extravagant as anything in the Lord of the Rings movies, but the violence is implied; the gore is always just offscreen. 4 stars; recommended. I rate it right up there with movies like Ben Hur and 10 Commandments.
Sophia Loren and Charlton Heston in Sweeping Epic
- David Atkins
Mega Producer Sam Bronston filmed this epic in Spain and starring Charlton Heston and a ravishing Sophia Loren. I loved this film when it was released and recommend it now. El Cid was released by Allied Artists. A wonderful small movie company that produced Love In The Afternoon, Friendly Persuasion, El Cid, 55 Days at Peking, Soldier In The Rain, Cabaret, Papillion, The Man Who Would Be King. Directors such as William Wyler, John Huston, Billy Wlder and great stars such as Gary Cooper, Ava Gardner, Steve McQueen, Audrey Hepburn starred in AA films. Sadly the company just could not make enough money to cover overhead, and had no TV division or Movie lot to collect rentals...it was live or die with the film division. These hits above were not enough to keep AA afloat. One of its major film hits of the 60's was likely the only surefire way of doing so, an Elvis Presley movie, Tickle Me.
El Cid: Timeless!
- Laura Sandberg
Pertinent to the war on terror we fight today, to two of the biggest stars in their prime, "El Cid" is a masterpiece, bringing history to life. With Charlton Heston as the hero and Sophia Loren as his true love, "El Cid" must drive the Moors out of Spain and win back the heart of his lady. Herbert Lom plays the leader of the Moors, a character not unlike Osama bin Laden. In fact, his opening speech sounds chillingly similar to something bin Laden would say. The sword fights are brilliantly staged as are the war scenes. The sound of the arrows still haunt me all these years later. The end of the movie is so inspiring that you begin to wonder where our "El Cid" is today.
Inspiration for U.S. citizen
This Movie shows our future citizens fedelity,patriotism,honor,parental responsebality and how much dedication it requires to be a good leader.