Zorba the GreekDirector: Michael Cacoyannis
If ever there was a role that Anthony Quinn was born to play, it was the lusty, life-affirming title character in Zorba the Greek. The scene is the isle of Crete, where English writer Alan Bates arrives in the hopes of realigning his own values and outlook on life. He is "adopted" by the flamboyant Zorba, who determines to educate Bates in the ways of the world-or, to be more precise, Zorba's world. Along the way, Bates is introduced to widow Irene Papas, the unrequited love object of everyone on the island, who comes to a tragic end when she is accused of adultery. The writer is also a spectator to the equally benighted romance between Zorba and venerable courtesan Lila Kedrova. Other disasters follow, but Zorba is able to convince Bates that failure is an inescapable part of life, and that only by constantly tasting defeat can one truly enjoy life's victories. Based on the novel by Nikos Kazantzakis, Zorba the Greek earned Oscars for actress Lila Kedrova, cinematographer Walter Lassally and art director Vassilis Fotopoulos.
- Release Date:
- Original Release:
- 20th Century Fox
- Region Code:
- [Wide Screen]
- [DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound]
- Sales rank:
Cast & Crew
|Anthony Quinn||Alexis Zorba|
|Irene Papas||The Widow|
|Lila Kedrova||Mme. Hortense|
|Vassilis Fotopoulos||Art Director|
|Mikis Theodorakis||Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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A bare outline of this film does not do justice to the way in which Anthony Quinn totally and completely dominates this picture and makes it his own. The sheer physical presence of Quinn on screen energizes and illuminates every scene he is in. He owns this movie. The story: Alan Bates plays an Englishman of Greek heritage moving temporarily to Crete to write a book and to attempt to revive an old lignite mine on family property. On the way he meets a Greek farmer called Zorba (Anthony Quinn) who attaches himself to Bates and becomes his friend, helper and confidant as they try and deal with ossified Cretan traditions, a beautiful widow, a stranded French courtesan, an abandoned lignite mine and a scheme to bring logs down from the mountain to use in the mine. What shines clear and strong throughout this film is Zorba's attitude to life, love, failure, ambition and death - he embraces them all fully and with unbridled enthusiasm. Zorba lives each day as though he is to be taken out and shot the next. Although he made many more films, Anthony Quinn was always best known for his role as Zorba. And it is worth buying the movie to see why. It is as though, in so enthusiastically portraying a man who loved life and attacked it with such a soaring passion, Quinn was saying to the audience, ''Look, here, this is the REAL me. Inside the body of Anthony Quinn beats Zorba's heart.'' This film is a wonderful, life-affirming, joyous yet bittersweet cinematic dance.
I have watched it about 100 times, I will watch a 100 times more. I had the occasion to meet Mikis Theodorakis, the music and movie blended together nicely.
a truly remarkable film. Based on Nicos Kazantzakis' masterpiece novel.