|THE MYSTERY OF OBERWALD (IL MISTERO DI OBERWALD) (director/writer: Michelangelo Antonioni; screenwriters: Tonino Guerra /based on the play The Eagle Has Two Heads by Jean Cocteau; cinematographer: Luciano Tovoli ; editors: AMichelangelontonioni/Francesc o Grandoni;; music: Guido Turchi ; cast: Monica Vitti (The Queen), Paolo Bonacelli (Count of Foehn), Franco Branciaroli (Sebastian), Luigi Diberti (Willenstein), Elisabetta Pozzi (Edith de Berg), Amad Saha Alan (Tony); Runtime: 129; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Alessandro Von Norman; RAI Radiotelevisione Italiana; 1980-Italy/West Germany-in Italian with English subtitles)|
|"Too stage-bound and the dialogue
is too tacky."
by Dennis Schwartz
made for Italian TV movie. It was done
in color video before transferred to 35mm.
It's a lesser movie by Michelangelo Antonioni ("The
Passenger"/"La Notte"/"Blow-Up"). Antonioni
adapts Jean Cocteau's 1947 silly but humorless fairy
tale play The Eagle Has Two Heads to
the big-screen. The movie reunites actress
Monica Vitti with Antonioni, in whose
film the Red Desert she starred in 17 years ago. The
experimental film is technically innovative but its
story is lacking, as it is too stage-bound and the
dialogue is too tacky.
Victorian England. Monica Vitti plays the grieving
widowed queen, whose hubby was assassinated ten years
ago on their wedding day. One stormy night, in the
queen's dilapidated castle at Oberwald,
a young radical poet named Sebastian (Franco
Branciaroli) attempts to
kill the queen and free the country of tyranny, but
faints. Instead of killing him, the queen is
attracted to him because he resembles the late king
and delivers a long monologue. When the poet awakens
he chats her up and falls in love with her.
about it is unrealistic and unconvincing.
REVIEWED ON 3/30/2015 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ