This article needs additional citations for verification. (May 2019)
|Constantine and the Cross|
|Directed by||Lionello De Felice|
|Written by||Lionello De Felice|
Michael Audley (English dialogue)
|Produced by||Mino Loy|
|Music by||Mario Nascimbene|
|Distributed by||Embassy Pictures (USA)|
Constantine and the Cross (Italian: Costantino il grande) is a 1961 historical drama film about the early career of the emperor Constantine, who first legalized and then adopted Christianity in the early 4th century. The fictionalised film only stretches as far into his life as the Battle of the Milvian Bridge in AD 312.
It was also known as Constantine the Great or Constantino il Grande - In Hoc Signo Vinces.
Constantine wins a battle and is sent to Rome. On the way he and his friend Hadrian are attacked by bandits. Hadrian is nursed back to health by some Christians, including Livia. The bandits were sent by Maxentius, Constantine's rival for power.
Constantine watches some Christians be eaten by the lions. He jumps into the arena to defend a surviving child, and asks for the other Christians to be set free.
Livia is arrested. Hadrian, who has fallen in love with her, arranges for her to escape from prison. Constantine is blamed, Maxentius persecutes Christians and attacks Constantine in Gaul.
- Cornel Wilde as Constantine
- Belinda Lee as Fausta
- Massimo Serato as Maxentius
- Christine Kaufmann as Livia
- Fausto Tozzi as Hadrian
- Tino Carraro as Maximian
- Carlo Ninchi as Constantius Chlorus
- Vittorio Sanipoli as Apuleius
- Nando Gazzolo as Licinius
- Annibale Ninchi as Galarius
- Elisa Cegani as Elena
- Franco Fantasia as Roman Soldier
- Loris Gizzi as Roman Prosecutor
- Enrico Glori as Livia's Father
- Jole Mauro as Celi
- Nando Tamberlani as Diocletian
- Renato Terra as Jailer
- Lauro Gazzolo as Amodius
Filming took place in August 1960, with locations in Yugoslavia and studio work in Rome. While filming a scene in Rome Cornel Wilde was scratched by a lion. Filming was completed by November.
The New York Times called it "one of those ponderous costumed tabloids that's trampled history to death and turned what's left of its fragments into boring banalities."
The Monthly Film Bulletin said "the familiar ingredients of this tired spectacle - lions, fair haired Christian girls, torture chambers, battles, assassination attempts, intrigue - fail to arouse any noticeable excitement in the director or the cast."
The movie was one of Belinda Lee's more widely seen European films.
- CONSTANTINE THE GREAT "(Costantino Il Grande - In Hoc Signo Vinces)" Monthly Film Bulletin; London Vol. 29, Iss. 336, (Jan 1, 1962): 153.
- This Hose for Exhibition With 36 others Bristow, Winifred. Picture Show; London (Aug 27, 1960): 3-4.
- Wilde Scratched by Lion New York Times 1 Sep 1960: 30.
- "Rome". Variety. 16 November 1960. p. 77.
- The Screen: 'Constantine' Tramples History to Death The Cast By BOSLEY CROWTHER Special to The New York Times 14 Mar 1963: 8.
- Vagg, Stephen (September 7, 2020). "A Tale of Two Blondes: Diana Dors and Belinda Lee". Filmink.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Constantine and the Cross|