This Austrian super epic is a hot mess and I love it. It has stories within stories within stories, the primmest orgies this side of the Code and subtlety is not exactly its thing. Its sheer size (literal cast of thousands) and messiness give it momentum and heft despite its garbled storyline.
Hungarian director Michael Curtiz brought along his preferred leads, Victor Varconi and Lucy Doraine, and he hired a young Walter Slezak to play one of Doraine’s toy boys. In general, there’s a lot to see for any fan of old Hollywood. Not for everyone but I had a grand time.
How does it end? Hover or tap below for a spoiler.The religious flashbacks cause the sinning heroine to repent.
If it were a dessert it would be: Seven Veils Cake. It’s a lot and thank goodness.
Availability: Available on DVD (it’s all-region) with German intertitles. I had to order mine from Germany as it doesn’t seem to be easily available in North America. Unfortunately, this version omits one flashback sequence entirely. Here’s hoping for an update!
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