Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Adventurers (1970)

I guess it's movies like The Adventurers that makes people think I have a poor taste in movies. Of course they're wrong, but sometimes I even doubt myself. Here we have Lewis Gilbert, one of UK's finest action directors, with probably the highest budget he's ever worked with, an international cast and shot all over the world. It's not as bad as people say it is, but I can see the problems.

We follow Dax (Bekim Fehmiu) as he grows up as the son of a diplomat (Fernando Rey) in Courteguay. They move to Italy after another revolution and Dax becomes a womanizer, a rich one, and absurdly fond of polo. When his father is killed he get's more involved in the politics of Courteguay and swears that he one day will kill the new dictator, who his father supported. 

But first sex and money. Together with his friends of rich young men he fuck's his way through the rich and beautiful in the world and all along the way he gathers money for his revenge - something he get's less and less interested in. He just want's to stay away from his country... but destiny want's something completely different...

Ah, that resume sounded SO boring. I guess it's a boring movie for some people out there, but I felt that the three hours flew away as I could witness some kinda of record of intrigues, cheesy sex-scenes, graphic violence, fantastic dialogue, and every scene filled with all the money the producers could spend! The actors mostly sleep through their job, but everyone looks handsome and/or cool and know's how to walk around in expensive sets. My favorite is Swedish actor Thommy Berggren as Prince Sergei Nikovitch, a fashion-designer who may or may not be gay, but slowly descents into depression and a strange relationship with his... lesbian wife! He's collection and fashion shows are the best part of the movie, extremely trippy! Charles Aznavour plays Marcel Champion, a little pervert who, it's revealed, has a secret sex-dungeon in the basement! Bekim Fehmiu himself goes around laying woman after woman down, looking sad and Gainsbourg-esqe, playing polo and get's more grey hair for every twenty minutes or so.

All actors are over-the-top and it's like witnessing an ultra-expensive soap-opera! There's one sex-scene by a pool that's one of the funniest I've ever seen. It's basically a lot of posing, and intercuts with sexual images of the garde statues! Later there's another sexual encounter in a greenhouse that's show with some naughty-looking flowers! So forget about taste here.

The highlights are the action, which is very lavish and spectacular. There's huge explosions, squibs, nasty knife-murders, some wild stunts, more explosions and a very, very epic look. Some reminds of the old Hollywood roman epics with thousands of people filling up the screen. It's very well made and was choreographed by Bob Simmons and Ernest Day directing on second unit. 

The Adventurers might be a silly, stupid, tasteless waste of money - but I liked it. There's a lot of unintentional comedy and some actors didn't really do their best... but it look gorgeous, as great action... and, I would say a strong sense of irony, especially in the end when it the destiny of Courteguay happens for the second time in the movie. 

Power just makes most people greedy idiots. That's the one and only truth that The Adventurers gives us. The rest is mindless, good-looking, fun.

And by the way, here's my favorite lines - spoken by Dax as a child and his girl friend:

Young Amparo: What are they doing now? 
Young Dax: I believe he is raping her. He rapes her, and she rapes him. 
Young Amparo: Let's do it. 
Young Dax: No! you are too young, and I think I have to kill you Afterwards.

Class! ;)

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