Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
Probably one of the best parts of the film is the extended scene showing the crossing of the Alps. This was surely one of the great feats of ancient warfare and we get a decent look at how tortuous it must have been here. The Punic soldiers crying out in English somehow lacks something, but this was a 1960 Italian dubbed film! Some of the battle scenes with the elephants are not too bad, but the overall effect is on the poor side. The most vigorous battle shown, Cannae in 217 BC is a joke! There is some attempt to show how the Romans were destroyed here, but somehow it gets lost in the details.
I give the film some credit for staying somewhere near the history, but many details are wide off the mark, and almost purposely so. The romance with Mature and Rita Gam is required of course for this period of movie, but it seems half-hearted at best. Again, Mature's Hannibal seems to almost doze through the scenes! No doubt Hannibal did console himself with a few Roman women for the many years he was in Italy, but what we get here is standard hollywood filler for the time. This film might be fun to watch along with the Italian Propaganada epic, Scipio Africanus. Both have the same lame style, although the older facist film has the production value which this film really lacks. Still, both make for some light viewing in the classic sword and sandal style.
The story is well known: Carthage and Rome are at war and Hannibal invades Italy by crossing the Alps with elephants in the middle of the winter. He then embarks on a conquest, which he is ultimately unable to complete.
As I stated in my opening remarks this is low budget, and this - unfortunately - is evident in every aspect of the picture: The storytelling is quite thin and not very historically accurate. The cast doesn't distinguish them selves - not even Victor Mature, who was usually brilliant in these kind of pictures. And the battle scenes are nearly embarrassing by usual Hollywood standards. It's actually a great pity, that director Edgar G. Ulmer wasn't able to extract more from the legendary story of Hannibal, especially those latter parts of his life, when Rome hunted him relentlessly and mercilessly, culminating in his apparent suicidal death by poisoning. Both Hannibal and indeed movie lovers deserved better.
The screenplay is disjointed as it doesn't really convey the reasons why Hannibal hated Rome so much or why he led an army of almost 100,000 men to trample over the Italian countryside for 18 years. The battle reenactments are small, sparing, and second-rate. The acting stinks especially by Mature whose presence always appears as if he just came out of a cocktail lounge around 3:00 a.m. Victor Mature was barely competent as a back-up actor not to speak of a lead role in a historical epic. Even more shame on the Italians who contrived this silly film about their own history. The direction is purely conventional for the period and so unimaginative. The screenplay is terrible and focuses on a ridiculous love story instead of the historical events for dramatism. History here is simply the backdrop for the romance. The anachronisms of the film themselves would require modern anachronisms to interpret as this film is horribly out-of-date. Wayne's 'Genghis Kahn' is better than this film. At least you have The Duke instead of 'Manure' to watch in a bad film.
A vastly superior film on Hannibal is Carmine Gallone's 1939 'Scipio Africanus' that looks at the conflict from the character Scipio's point of view in which the climax comes with Hannibal's defeat at Zama. Unlike this film, 'Scipio' primarily emphasizes on the history for the drama as opposed to romance.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Historically inaccurate. For example, my reading of history suggests that only three of Hannibal's elephants made it from Spain over the Alps into Italy. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Frank Paul Tarney
I read the book many years ago. It was'nt the same story. Production values were pretty cheap also.Published 8 months ago by Kevin Krizka
I am glad to say that today 30 October I finally received my order plus one other order of the same movie in a different shipment. I will be returning one of them. Read morePublished 9 months ago by hector
I liked it very much my tape messed up that's why I wanted it againPublished 11 months ago by Helen K Hall