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A shipwrecked prince's love for a married queen triggers war between Greece and Troy.
In 1100 B.C., Paris, son of King Priam and Queen Hecuba, rulers of the wealthy city of Troy, desires peace, despite his reputation as a skilled warrior. Believing Troy must reconcile with the war-loving Greeks, Paris proposes to serve as ambassador to the various Greek kingdoms. Despite the prophecies of his sister Cassandra, who is haunted by visions of disaster, Paris sets sail to his first destination, Sparta, the war-mongering nation that invaded Troy years before. During the voyage, a violent storm erupts, causing Paris to fall overboard. Believed drowned by his companions, Paris washes ashore on a Spartan beach and is found by Helen, wife of brutish Spartan king Menelaus. To Paris, Helen seems like the embodiment of his favorite goddess Aphrodite, and he becomes enamored of her. Helen returns his affection, although she does not, at first, reveal who she is. She hides the injured Paris and secretly arranges for his care with her former nurse. After his recovery, Paris approaches a council of bickering Greek kings, unaware they have met to discuss war against Troy. The leaders, among them Achilles, Agamemnon and Ulysses, covet Troy's treasures, but know that the walls surrounding the city, which were built after Sparta's invasion, are impregnable. When Paris introduces himself, the leaders force him to prove that he is the great warrior by defeating the warrior king Ajax in a hand-to-hand fight. Then, after pretending to listen to his proposal, they consider how to use his presence to further their war plans. When Helen learns that Menelaus plans to torture Paris, she sends her slaves, Andraste and deaf-mute Adelphous, to help the Trojan escape to a cove where a ship will take him home. At the shore, Helen says goodbye, but when soldiers arrive, Paris takes her with him when he escapes. Throughout their voyage to Troy, Helen worries about the far-reaching consequences of leaving Sparta. Meanwhile, the Greek kings are delighted to hear about Helen's "abduction," which gives them an excuse to build an enormous army and unite for war. When Paris returns to Troy, the citizens are grateful to Helen for saving his life, until they realize that she is the queen of Sparta. Their warmth then turns to anger against the lovers, and everyone prepares for a long war. Later, a thousand Greek ships approach Troy's shores. After disembarking, the Greeks approach the walls of Troy and the battle ensues. Although the Trojans win the first skirmish, their mightiest warrior, Paris' brother Polydorus, is killed and a funeral is held for him. During the following years of stalemate between the two armies, the Greeks loot and rape the surrounding villages, while the Trojans make night raids on the Greek camps. The Greek leaders bicker among themselves and Agamemnon, tired of Menelaus' debauchery and incompetence, threatens to leave with his troops. When the Trojans consider banishing Paris from Troy, Helen, wishing to stop the war and restore Paris' reputation, volunteers to return to her husband. Paris' family, without his knowledge, negotiates her return with the Greeks and takes her to their camp. However, after she is reunited with Menelaus, the Greeks, who had planned to double-cross the Trojans all along, demand treasures and a fight commences. Paris, who has learned of Helen's sacrifice, arrives in time to rescue her, and kills the Greek Patroclus as they escape. The Trojans, now realizing that the Greeks are fighting for wealth, not for Helen, forgive her. To avenge the death of Patroclus, Achilles demands a hand-to-hand combat, which Hector, another brother of Paris, accepts. Outside the Trojan gate, the combatants meet, and after a struggle, Achilles kills Hector. Disrespectfully, Achilles drags Hector's body from his chariot and then proudly parades before the mourning Trojans. Seeing his brother dishonored, Paris tries to shoot Achilles, but his arrows bounce away from the seemingly invincible Greek. Then, praying to Zeus, Paris aims again and the arrow hits his enemy's heel, causing Achilles to fall and fatally strike his head on a rock. The Greeks feel defeated, until Ulysses shares with them a plan he has devised. Later, the Greeks present a statue of a giant horse at the gates of the Trojan wall, and then pretend to sail away, secretly leaving behind an army hidden in the woods. Seeing the ships depart, the Trojans rejoice and, despite the misgivings of Cassandra, Helen and Paris, bring the statue into the city. In an ensuing celebration, the wine flows freely as tensions of war are released. Consequently, few Trojans are conscious later, when Greeks waiting patiently inside the horse quietly open its secret door and roam the city freely. They open the gates, allowing more Greeks to flood the city. Before the slumbering Trojans are fully awake, the city has been overtaken. In chaos and panic, the Trojans fight in the streets. Priam commands Paris and Helen to flee, but Menelaus finds the lovers. Before Paris can defeat Menelaus in an honorable fight, a Greek soldier fatally stabs Paris in the back. Once Troy is destroyed, the Greeks sail home with Trojan wealth, and Helen is forced to return with Menelaus to an uncertain future.
Cast & Crew
|MPAA Ratings:||Premiere Info:||New York and Los Angeles openings: 26 Jan 1956|
|Release Date:||1956||Production Date:||
|Color/B&W:||Color (Warnercolor)||Distributions Co:||Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.|
|Sound:||Mono (RCA Sound System)||Production Co:||Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.|
|Duration(mins):||114 or 118-119||Country:||Italy and United States|
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THE LAST GLORY OF TROY AND MAX STEINER...
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