Cabiria (1914)

Cabiria is a 1914 Italian epic silent film, directed by Giovanni Pastrone and shot in Turin. The film is set in ancient Sicily, Carthage, and Cirta during the period of the Second Punic War (218–202 BC). It follows a melodramatic main plot about an abducted little girl, Cabiria, and features an eruption of Mount Etna, heinous religious rituals in Carthage, the alpine trek of Hannibal, Archimedes’ defeat of the Roman fleet at the Siege of Syracuse and Scipio maneuvering in North Africa. Apart from being a classic on its own terms, the film is also notable for being the first film in which the long-running film character Maciste makes his debut. According to Martin Scorsese, in this work Pastrone invented the epic movie and deserves credit for many of the innovations often attributed to D.W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille. Among those was the extensive use of a moving camera, thus freeing the feature-length narrative film from “static gaze”. Original release date: April 18, 1914

The historical background and characters in the story are taken from Livy’s Ab Urbe Condita (written ca. 27–25 BC). In addition, the script of Cabiria was partially based on Gustave Flaubert’s 1862 novel Salammbo and Emilio Salgari’s 1908 novel Cartagine in fiamme (Carthage in Flames). It was the first film shown at the White House.

Directed by
Giovanni Pastrone

Screenplay by
Giovanni Pastrone

Based on
A book by Titus Livius and a novel by Emilio Salgari

Produced by
Giovanni Pastrone

Cast
Carolina Catena as Cabiria, as a Child
Émile Vardannes as Batto, father of Cabiria
Gina Marangoni as Croessa, nurse of Cabiria
Lidia Quaranta as Cabiria, as an adult
Dante Testa as Karthalo, the High Priest of Carthage
Umberto Mozzato as Fulvio (Fulvius) Axilla, Roman patrician and spy
Bartolomeo Pagano as Maciste, slave of Axilla
Raffaele di Napoli as Bodastoret, an Innkeeper
Émile Vardannes as Hannibal*, Carthaginian general
Actress Lidia Quaranta, who played the title role.
Edoardo Davesnes as Hasdrubal, Carthaginian general; brother of Hannibal
Italia Almirante-Manzini as Sofonisba (Sophonisba), daughter of Hasdrubal
Alessandro Bernard as Siface (Syphax), King of Cirta
Luigi Chellini as Scipione (Scipio), Roman consul and general
Vitale Di Stefano as Massinissa (Masinissa), King of Numidia
Enrico Gemelli as Archimede (Archimedes), Greek engineer and philosopher
Ignazio Lupi as Arbace

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Genres: Adventure, Movies, Drama, 1910's, Silent Films, Silent Films, Drama Movies, ALL Movies

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