Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse

Director: Vincente Minnelli

Cast: Glenn Ford, Ingrid Thulin, Charles Boyer

     
 

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There's a rumor that the MGM executive who thought that Glenn Ford could fill Rudolph Valentino's shoes in the 1962 remake of Valentino's Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse would have been arrested had it been sufficiently proven that he was competent to stand trial. The World War I setting of the original Blasco-Ibanez novel has been updated to World War II, but

Overview

There's a rumor that the MGM executive who thought that Glenn Ford could fill Rudolph Valentino's shoes in the 1962 remake of Valentino's Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse would have been arrested had it been sufficiently proven that he was competent to stand trial. The World War I setting of the original Blasco-Ibanez novel has been updated to World War II, but the basic plot remains the same. A well-to-do Argentinian family, rent asunder by the death of patriarch Lee J. Cobb, scatters to different European countries in the late 1930s. Before expiring, Cobb had warned his nephew Carl Boehm that the latter's allegiance to the Nazis would bring down the wrath of the titular Four Horsemen: War, Conquest, Famine and Death. Ford, Cobb's grandson, has promised to honor his grandfather's memory by thwarting the plans of Boehm. At the cost of his own life, Ford leads allied bombers to Boehm's Normandy headquarters. As unsuited as Glenn Ford was for his role, co-star Ingrid Thulin was even worse: her Swedish accent proved so impenetrable that MGM was obliged to have Angela Lansbury dub Ms. Thulin's voice. A major misfire for director Vincente Minnelli, The Four Horseman of the Apocalypse was an expensive flop, forcing MGM to hope and pray that their upcoming epic How the West Was Won would save the studio's hindquarters (it did).

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse is a film filled with pluses and minuses, that when added together comes out a moderately good film. On the plus side, it is blessed with the sensational visual flair of director Vincente Minnelli. Always one of the screen's most astute employers of color, Minnelli has a field day with Horsemen, adopting red as his primary color and utilizing it to terrific effect throughout. The director is also in fine form with the crowd scenes in Horsemen, using bodies and accoutrements to create atmosphere, tension and drama. Minnelli also uses montage to very good effect, especially in a particularly well done battle sequence, and he cleverly sets up a "date" scene which plays like one extended evening, though it actually covers several days. Andre Previn's glorious score is also an asset, as is Milton Krasner's evocative camerawork. On the negative side is, unfortunately, the screenplay, which is often awkward and at times unwieldy. More damaging is the casting of Glenn Ford in the crucial lead role. A good actor, he's simply the wrong type, steady and filled with integrity when what is demanded is a devil-may-care dilettante who eventually learns to mature and take responsibility. Also problematic is Ingrid Thulin, who looks smashing but whose entire role is dubbed by Angela Lansbury. The dubbing is good, and Lansbury does quite well dramatically, but it's clear that the voice and the actress do not match. The film is also too long and drags in a number of places. Even with these flaws, Horsemen is worth a look, though many may not want to stick with it for the whole film.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/05/2007
UPC:
4897007031207
Original Release:
1962
Rating:
NR
Source:
Castaway Pictures
Region Code:
0
Sales rank:
9,659

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Glenn Ford Julio Desnoyers
Ingrid Thulin Marguerite Laurier
Charles Boyer Marcelo Desnoyers
Lee J. Cobb Julio Madariaga
Paul Henreid Etienne Laurier
Paul Lukas Karl Von Hartrott
Yvette Mimieux Chi-Chi Desnoyers
Harriet MacGibbon Dona Luisa Desnoyers
Kathryn Givney Elena Von Hartrott
Marcel Hillaire Armand Dibier
George Dolenz Gen. Von Kleig
Stephen Bekassy Col. Kleinsdorf
Nestor Paiva Miguel
Albert Remy Francois
Brian Avery Gustav Von Hartrott
Karl Heinz Böhm Heinrich Von Hartrott
Angela Lansbury Marguerite Laurier

Technical Credits
Vincente Minnelli Director
Robert Ardrey Screenwriter
Lee Le Blanc Special Effects
Julian Blaustein Producer
George W. Davis Art Director
Adrienne Fazan Editor
John Gay Screenwriter
Arnold A. Gillespie Special Effects
Keogh Gleason Set Decoration/Design
Henry W. Grace Set Decoration/Design
Robert R. Hoag Special Effects
Rene Hubert Costumes/Costume Designer
Fred Koenekamp Camera Operator
Milton Krasner Cinematographer
Ben Lewis Editor
Urie McCleary Art Director
Orry-Kelly Costumes/Costume Designer
Charles Parker Makeup
Walter Plunkett Costumes/Costume Designer
André Previn Score Composer
Alex Romero Choreography
Elliot Scott Art Director

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Four Horseman of Apocalypse
1. The Sinoyear Family [28:46]
2. Berlin 1939 [21:41]
3. Magarit Become Julio's Mistress [24:24]
Disc #2 -- The Four Horseman of Apocalypse
1. Paris Under German Occupation [24:45]
2. Julio Joins Partisan Activists [27:22]
3. Mission With Last Two Children Gone [25:07]

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