Thursday, September 11, 2014

Brief Thoughts - THE CONQUEROR OF THE ORIENT (1960)

THE CONQUEROR  OF THE ORIENT was one of the slew of unwatched movies in my collection. It is one of the fifty movies in the giant pile of DVD fun from Mill Creek called the Warriors 50 Movie Pack Collection which means its one of a couple of dozen films I have every intention of eventually seeing. One day. So, I pulled this one randomly out of the pack and what I got was sadly below par.

The film tells of the fall of tyrant Dakkar who is played by Jess Franco regular Paul Muller. He desires a woman named Fatima who despises him but he forces the young beauty into a relationship with the threat of eventual marriage. She escapes into the countryside in a way that is edited out of this 74 minute version of the film and is rescued from her doomed rowboat by farmboy Nadir. Nadir is played by the not very oriental looking Rik Battaglia but since no one in the film seems to actually be portraying someone of their actual race I guess it hardly matters. He falls in love with the young lady just before she is cruelly snatched back by Dakkar's men causing Nadir to vow he will reclaim her from the palace. After he fails miserably and only survives his trip to the big city through Fatima's intervention our hero is told by his elderly parental figure that Nadir is actually the son of the King that Dakkar deposed and murdered. And so, the stage is set for the rightful King to rise up, build an army and destroy the usurper to claim his birthright and his darling beloved. Trust me -you've seen it all before. 

The film is pretty slight with its budgetary constraints obvious in nearly every scene. The sword fight sequences are the worst example of the production's poverty as I have seen more convincing battles between laughing six year olds. The actors give it a hearty try and there are some good scenes of Muller being villainous but overall this is a below average film with little of interest to anyone outside of sword & sandal completists. I might be coaxed into watching THE CONQUEROR  OF THE ORIENT a second time if a complete print of it surfaces that is in the correct aspect ratio (this one is cropped to TV friendly size). Otherwise - no! 

No comments: