International Journal of the Classical Tradition

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 383–423 | Cite as

Neo-mythologism: Apollo and the Muses on the screen

  • Martin M. Winkler


In antiquity, the idea of myth was fluid enough to accommodate a wide variety of divergent, even contradictory, versions of the same story. This tradition continues in modern times: myths, whether ancient or later, preserve their Protean nature. Striking examples for this flexibility of mythical tales are the adaptations of ancient myths to the screen. Classical antiquity has always played a major part in the history of film (and television), but screenwriters and directors as a rule take great liberties with their source materials. In films based on Greek and Roman literature, especially epic and tragedy, and in films with invented or modern settings, figures familiar to us from classical sources recur with surprising variability. Vittorio Cottafavi, director of several films set in antiquity, coined the term “neo-mythologism” for this phenomenon.

The present paper intends to demonstrate the validity of critical examinations of such neomythologism by examining one specific topic: the appearances of Apollo and the Muses on the screen. It is the first comprehensive survey of its subject and analyzes the most important films in which Apollo and the Muses play major parts. The paper demonstrates the wide variety of neomythological aproaches which films on ancient subjects usually exhibit. They range from tragedy to epic, from musical, comedy, and romance to science fiction, from art-house films to commercial products. Although individual works differ considerably in their artistic qualities, they all present noteworthy examples of the continuing vitality of the classical past in today’s culture.


Classical Tradition Classical Antiquity Star Trek Greek Tragedy Greek Mythology 
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  1. 1.
    Readers unfamiliar with the variety of Apollonian myths and images in antiquity may find an overview in the essay collection Apollo: Origins and Influences, ed. Jon Solomon (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1994).Google Scholar
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    Jon Solomon, The Ancient World in the Cinema, 2nd ed. (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2001), 36–99, gives the most extensive overview. For detailed analyses of specific aspects of Roman history on film see Maria Wyke, Projecting the Past: Ancient Rome, Cinema and History, ser. The New Ancient World (New York and London: Routledge, 1997), and Gladiator: Film and History, ed. Martin M. Winkler (Oxford; Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2004).Google Scholar
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    Maria Wyke, “Are You Not Entertained? Classicists and Cinema,” International Journal of the Classical Tradition, 9 (2002–2003), 430–445; quotation at 445. I have argued for the importance of classicists’ involvement in film philology on two previous occasions: in my “Introduction” to Classical Myth and Culture in the Cinema, ed. Martin M. Winkler (Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2001), 3–22, and in “Altertumswissenschaftler im Kino; oder: Quo vadis, philologia?” International Journal of the Classical Tradition, 11 (this same volume), above, 95–110 (review article on Pontes II: Antike im Film, ed. Martin Korenjak and Karlheinz Töchterle, Comparanda 5 [Innsbruck: Studien Verlag, 2002]).Google Scholar
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    Both quotations are from Pierre Sorlin, The Film in History: Restaging the Past (Oxford: Blackwell, 1980), ix. Regarding films set in classical antiquity cf. my “Gladiator and the Traditions of Historical Cinema” in Gladiator: Film and History (above, n. 2), 16–30, at 16–24 (section entitled “Film and Historical Authenticity”).Google Scholar
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    Sergio Bertelli, I corsari del tempo: Gli errori e gli orrori dei film storici (Florence: Ponte Alle Grazie, 1995), provides the most extensive examinations of errors contained in a large variety of historical films.Google Scholar
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    Cf. e.g., Paul Maas, Textual Criticism, tr. Barbara Flower (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1958; rpt. 1972), 3–9 (German original: Textkritik [Leipzig: B. G. Teubner, 1957], 6–9), and M. L. West, Textual Criticism and Editorial Technique Applicable to Greek and Latin Texts (Stuttgart: Teubner, 1973), 12–13 and 35–37.Google Scholar
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    A case in point are the ancient portrayals of Odysseus as hero in epic and villain in tragedy. W. B. Stanford, The Ulysses Theme: A Study of the Adaptability of a Traditional Hero (Oxford: Blackwell, 1954; rpt. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1968), is the classic account.Google Scholar
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    On Cottafavi and his term “neo-mythologism” see Pierre Leprohon, The Italian Cinema, tr. Roger Greaves and Oliver Stallybrass, Cinema Two (London: Secker and Warburg; New York and Washington: Praeger, 1972), 173–179 (French original: Le Cinéma italien: Histoire, chronologie, biographies, filmographies, documents, images [Paris: Seghers, 1966] 184–190).Google Scholar
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    Quoted from Marianne McDonald, Ancient Sun, Modern Light: Greek Drama on the Modern Stage (New York: Columbia University Press, 1992), 145. Tony Harrison, “Facing Up to the Muses,” Proceedings of the Classical Association (Great Britain), 85 (1988), 7–29, discusses his views on masks in greater detail at 18–22. A reprint appears in Tony Harrison, ed. Neil Astley, Bloodaxe Critical Anthologies 1 (Newcastle Upon Tyne: Bloodaxe Books, 1991), 429–454 (442–448 on masks). Cf. also Peter Hall, Exposed by the Mask: Form and Language in Drama (New York: Theatre Communications Group, 2000), 24–30 and 33–36.Google Scholar
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    Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s film The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943) contains a brief scene in which the protagonist attends a musical comedy called Ulysses in a London theater in 1902. The stage reveals Mt. Olympus, where the council of the gods is deciding on Odysseus’ return to Ithaca, a scene modeled on Book One of Homer’s Odyssey. The divine assembly consists of Zeus, Athena, Hera, Poseidon (absent in Homer), Hermes, Ares, Aphrodite, and Apollo. Apollo appears holding a lyre and wearing a radiate crown on his head. As in Homer, he does not take part in the deliberations. The Apollo Belvedere, a Roman copy of a Greek original now in the Vatican, is probably the most famous type of the god’s statuary. A gaudy partially painted reproduction of it (black hair, bright-red cloak) briefly appears in Jean-Luc Godard’s Le mépris (Contempt, 1963). The type recurs in the opening sequence of Blake Edwards’s farce The Return of the Pink Panther (1975), in which an ingenious thief steals the world’s largest diamond (fictional) from an Eastern museum (equally fictional). To impress on viewers the circumstance that the museum is indeed great enough to have such a treasure in its collection, the statue of Apollo appears in several shots. It is the only work of art in this museum that is given such prominence, thereby lending an aura of high culture to the museum and a measure of credibility to the film’s plot. The Belvedere Apollo also appears to the protagonist of Oliver Stone’s The Doors (1991) in a scene of drug-induced hallucination.Google Scholar
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    On Pasolini and Aeschylus see especially Italo Gallo, “Pasolini traduttore di Eschilo,” and Maria Grazia Bonanno, “Pasolini e l’Orestea: Dal ‘teatro di parola’ al ‘cinema di poesia’,” both in: Pasolini e l’antico: I doni della ragione, ed. Umberto Todini (Naples: Edizioni Scientifiche Italiane, 1995), 33–43 and 45–66. (The book’s subtitle is a free translation of Aeschylus, Eumenides 850.) This book also reprints (257–259) Pasolini’s own text on this film (“Nota per l’ambientazione dell’Orestiade in Africa”).Google Scholar
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    Marianne McDonald and Martin M. Winkler, “Michael Cacoyannis and Irene Papas on Greek Tragedy,” in: Classical Myth and Culture in the Cinema (above, n. 3) —, 72–89; quotation at 81.Google Scholar
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    The three oracles quoted above appear at Herodotus, The Histories 7. 140–141 and 220. Peter Green, The Greco-Persian Wars (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and London: University of California Press, 1996; rpt. 1998), 67–68 and 95, gives the complete versions in English. Green’s book is the standard modern account of 480 D.C.Google Scholar
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    Leonidas’ reply is reported by Plutarch, Sayings of Spartans 11 (=Moralia 225 c-d). According to Plutarch, Leonidas answered in writing to a written command from Xerxes (“Send [i.e. hand over] your weapons”) and referred to these weapons, not, as in the film, to the Spartans.Google Scholar
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    Quotation from Kemp R. Niver, Early Motion Pictures: The Paper Print Collection in the Library of Congress, ed. Bebe Bergsten (Washington: Library of Congress, 1985), 232 (s.v. “The Oracle of Delphi”), with additional information on this film. Méliès made several films on classical subjects. On Apollonian aspects of his works see Maurice Bessy and Lo Duca, Georges Méliès, mage: Édition du centenaire (1861–1961) (Paris: Pauvert, 1961), 14 (drawing by Méliès of a classicizing musician or dancer or perhaps even a Muse, holding a lyre above her head), 36 (drawing and text by Méliès of a satiric scene from the battle of the Lapiths and centaurs, a myth that led to one of the most famous ancient representations of Apollo, his statue on the temple of Zeus at Olympia), and 198 (design by Méliès of a scene for Faust with ruins of Greco-Roman architecture, part of which somewhat resembles the ruins of Apollo’s temple at Delphi).Google Scholar
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    The Muses briefly appear in Méliès’ 1903 film Le tonnerre de Jupiter (Jupiter’s Thunder); cf. Solomon, The Ancient World in the Cinema (above, n. 2) —, 102: “a dwarfish Olympian [is] throwing cardboard lightning bolts onto the stage. They explode, he does a few amusing flips, and the Muses appear behind him.”Google Scholar
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    Frederick M. Ahl, “Amber, Avallon, and Apollo’s Singing Swan,” American Journal of Philology, 103 (1982), 373–411, provides detailed documentation.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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    The film’s English-language version, from which my quotation below is taken, is variously entitled Loves of Hercules, The Love of Hercules, and Hercules vs. the Hydra.Google Scholar
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    Shortly after this film, another cinematic Hercules receives guidance from a rather eerie (and masked) Sibyl in Mario Bava’s Ercole al centro della terra (1961), a film remarkable for telling its neo-mythologism in the style of a horror film. The film’s English titles are Hercules in the Haunted World, Hercules vs. the Vampires, The Vampires vs. Hercules, Hercules at the Center of the Earth, and With Hercules to the Center of the Earth. The titular vampires refer to Underworld monsters and to the presence of Christopher Lee in the role of the villainous King Lykos. Lee is best known for playing Count Dracula in several films.Google Scholar
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    The name “Delos” (etymologically related to dêloun, “to make visible, disclose, reveal”) means “Visible, Conspicuous, Clear.” According to legend, the island is so named because it suddenly became visible after having been hidden below the sea.Google Scholar
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    Delos-Film, a minor German production company that released a few romantic melodramas and comedies in the mid-1950s, had a stylized Ionic column for its logo. Apollo Cinema is the name of a Los Angeles-based distribution company. Apollo Cinemas are a large theater chain in Great Britain. The electronic Apollo Movie Guide ( promises “intelligent reviews online.” The level of this intelligence varies.Google Scholar
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    Jean Cocteau, The Art of Cinema, ed. André Bernard and Claude Gauteur, tr. Robin Buss (London and New York: Boyars, 1992; rpt. 1999), 23, 123, and 56 (with slight corrections); cf. also 176–177 and 192–193.—I have examined the final close-up on the face of Greta Garbo in Rouben Mamoulian’s film Queen Christina (1933) in connection with the face of Apollo on one of his most famous classical statues, that on the temple of Zeus at Olympia, in “The Face of Tragedy: From Theatrical Mask to Cinematic Close-Up,” Mouseion, III.2 (2002), 43–70, at 65–69.Google Scholar
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    Martin Vöhler, “Die Melancholie am Ende des Jahrhunderts: Zum Blick des Odysseus von Theo Angelopoulos,” in: PONTES II: Antike im Film —(above, n. 3), 72–83, examines classical and Homeric aspects of the film. Françoise Létoublon and Caroline Eades, “Apo tous arkhaious stous prosôpikous mythous: To prôto vlemma kai o arkhegonos logos ston Theodôro Angelopoulo,” in: Sinemythologia: Oi ellênikoi mythoi ston pankosmio kinêmatografo, ed. Michalis Dêmopoulos (Athens: Politistikê Olympiada, 2003), 89–113, give a more detailed interpretation. I am indebted to Françoise Létoublon for making the original French version of their article (“Des mythes antiques à celui du premier regard et de la parole originelle chez Angelopoulos”) available to me. Cf. also the chapter on this film in Andrew Horton, The Felms of Theo Angelopoulos: A Cinema of Contemplation, new ed., ser. Princeton Modern Greek Studies (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1999), 181–201. Sylvie Rollet, “Le regard d’Ulysse: Un plaidoyer pour l’humanité du cinéma,” Positif, 415 (September, 1995), 18–20, gives an introduction to Ulysses’ Gaze and Odyssean overtones in earlier films by Angelopoulos.Google Scholar
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    This is so despite Angelopoulos’s statement that “‘A’ is not me, not Angelopoulos!” The quotation is from Andrew Horton, “What Do Our Souls Seek? An Interview with Theo Angelopoulos,” in: The Last Modernist: The Films of Theo Angelopoulos, ed. Andrew Horton, Contributions to the Study of Popular Culture 66 (Westport: Greenwood Press, 1997), 96–110, at 103. A film directed by “A” that is screened early in Ulysses’ Gaze is never seen, but its soundtrack is that of Angelopoulos’s own film To meteoro vima tou pelargou (The Suspended Step of the Stork, 1991). In his Taxidi sta Kithira (Voyage to Cythera, 1983), Angelopoulos had provided the voice for the actor who plays the protagonist, a film director “who resembles a younger Angelopoulos” (Horton, The Films of Theo Angelopoulos [above, n. 23], A Cinema of Contemplation, new ed., ser. Princeton Modern Greek Studies (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1999, 127).Google Scholar
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    Quotation from Dan Georgakas, “Greek Cinema for Beginners: A Thumbnail History,” Film Criticism, 27 no. 2 (Winter 2002–2003), 2–8, at 2.Google Scholar
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    The description of the director’s experience with Apollo on Delos as given by Horton, —The Films of Theo Angelopoulos (above, n. 23), 189, does not conform to the text quoted above. Horton, 202, quotes Angelopoulos’s own verbal description of the moment, given in an interview about two years before filming Ulysses’ Gaze; it, too, is different from what appears in the film: “One day while he is visiting the sacred island of Delos, the birthplace of Apollo, from a crack in the ground a marble head of Apollo mysteriously rises from the ground and shatters into many pieces.”Google Scholar
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    Quoted from Horton, —The Films of Theo Angelopoulos (above, n. 23),, 202 (immediately following the words quoted in the preceding note).Google Scholar
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    Dan Fainaru, “The Human Experience in One Gaze: Ulysses’ Gaze” (1996 interview), in: Theo Angelopoulos: Interviews, ed. Dan Fainaru, ser. Conversations with Filmmakers (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2001), 93–100; quotation at 98.Google Scholar
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    Fainaru, “The Human Experience in One Gaze,” 98. Angelopoulos’s entire description of this scene here is worth reading. Cf. Horton, —The Films of Theo Angelopoulos (above, n. 23), 195: “‘A’s’ eyes fill with tears as he looks toward us and thus up at the screen where the lost film has just finished running.” According to Angelopoulos, the three reels of film shot by the Manaki brothers do exist, but the chemical process necessary to develop them is unkown.Google Scholar
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    Cf. Angelopoulos’s own words on this important point as quoted by Horton, —The Films of Theo Angelopoulos (above, n. 23), 199. Létoublon and Eades, “Apo tous arkhaious stous prosôpikous mythous” (above, n. 23), To prôto vlemma kai o arkhegonos logos ston Theodôro Angelopoulo,” in: Sinemythologia: Oi ellênikoi mythoi ston pankosmio kinêmatografo, ed. Michalis Dêmopoulos (Athens: Politistikê Olympiada, 2003), note 21, quote the director’s final soliloquy and provide the references to the Odyssey which his words contain.Google Scholar
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    Plato, Alcibiades I, 133b. This was one of Plato’s most influential works, although some modern scholars question his authorship.Google Scholar
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    Quoted from Andrew Horton, “National Culture and Individual Vision” (1992 interview), in: Theo Angelopoulos: Interviews —(above, n. 28) 83–88, at 86. The quotation also appears in Horton, The Films of Theo Angelopoulos (above, n. 23), A Cinema of Contemplation, new ed., ser. Princeton Modern Greek Studies (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1999) 3 and 196.Google Scholar
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    Otta Wenskus, “Star Trek: Antike Mythen und moderne Energiewesen”, in PONTES II: Antike im Film —(above, n. 3). 128–135, discusses this episode at 132–133 and mentions (130) that the motto of the Starfleet Academy (Ex astris scientia) is patterned on that of NASA’s Apollo missions (Ex luna scientia).Google Scholar
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    Erich von Däniken’s pseudo-scientific bestseller Erinnerungen an die Zukunft: Ungelöste Rätsel der Vergangenheit (literally, “Remembrances of the Future: Unsolved Riddles of the Past”; Düsseldorf and Vienna: Econ, 1968; rpt. 1976) appeared in English as Chariots of the Gods? Unsolved Mysteries of the Past, tr. Michael Heron (New York: Putnam, 1970; rpt. New York: Berkley Books, 1999, but without the question mark). A companion book—Meine Welt in Bildern: Bildargumente für Theorien, Spekulationen und Erforschtes (Düsseldorf and Vienna: Econ, 1973)—was published in English as In Search of Ancient Gods: My Pictorial Evidence for the Impossible, tr. Michael Heron (New York: Putnam, 1974; rpt. New York: Bantam, 1975). A film duly followed the first book: Harald Reinl’s Erinnerungen an die Zukunft (1970; English title: Chariots of the Gods, without question mark). The film’s English ads asked: “Was God an Astronaut?”Google Scholar
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    The scholarly locus classicus for this is Wilhelm Nestle, Vom Mythos zum Logos: Die Selbstentfaltung des griechischen Denkens von Homer bis auf die Sophistik und Sokrates, 2nd ed. (1941; rpt. Stuttgart: Kröner, 1975). On this see now Glenn W. Most, “From Logos to Mythos,” in: From Myth to Reason? Studies in the Development of Greek Thought, ed. Richard Buxton (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1999), 29–47.Google Scholar
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    Theocritus 15 (Syrakosiai ê Adôniazousai: “The Women of Syracuse, or The Women at the Festival of Adonis”); Bion 1 (Epitaphios Adônidos: “Lament for Adonis”). Texts and English translations of these poems are easily accessible in The Greek Bucolic Poets, ed. J. M. Edmonds (Loeb Classical Library; rev. ed.; Cambridge: Harvard University Press, London: Heinemann, 1938; several rpts.), 175–195 and 385–395. For Shelley see Shelley’s Adonais: A Critical Edition, ed. Anthony D. Knerr (New York: Columbia University Press, 1984); cf. Jennifer Wallace, Shelley and Greece: Rethinking Romantic Hellenism (Basingstoke: MacMillan; New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1997), pp. 109–118.Google Scholar
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    In science fiction, the name Apollo appears because of the names from Greek mythology that have been given to most constellations and that are also prominent in space travel. The television series Battlestar Galactica (1978) and related TV films have a Captain Apollo, who has advanced to Commander Apollo in Battlestar Galactica: The Second Coming (1999). William Hanna and Joseph Barbera’s animated Jetsons: The Movie (1990), an expansion of their 1960s television series, includes someone called Apollo Blue. But Ron Howard’s Apollo 13 (1995), a film about that ill-fated moon mission, makes no mention of Apollo at all.—Several characters called Apollo appear in film stories set in modern times. In the silent era, B. A. Rolfe’s crime drama Miss 139 (1921) features a Professor Apollo Cawber, and in D. W. Griffith’s religious melodrama The White Rose (1923), set in the American South, a character is nicknamed Apollo. Another Apollo appears in Sydney Morgan’s Shadow of Egypt of 1924. “Johnny Apollo” is the protagonist’s alias in Henry Hathaway’s 1940 film noir of that name. Another Apollo is in Daniel Mann’s A Dream of Kings (1969), based on a work by Greek-American author Harry Mark Petrakis and set in Chicago’s Greek community. The black boxer Apollo Creed is the eponymous hero’s formidable antagonist in four of the five Rocky films directed by John G. Avildsen (1976) and Sylvester Stallone (1979, 1982, 1985). In the late 1990s, Greek mythology made a popular comeback to television in the series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and in some television or video films spun off it, such as Hercules: Zero to Hero (1999). Greek gods, including Apollo, play prominent roles in this Hercules’ adventures. So do the Muses. Earlier, The Illiac [sic] Passion (1967), directed by Gregory J. Markopoulos and loosely based on Aeschylus’ Prometheus Bound, also features an Apollo, although its ancient model did not. Other curios with an Apollo are the silent The Triumph of Venus (1918), directed by Edwin Bower Hesser, and The Affairs of Aphrodite (1970), directed by Alain Patrick. The 1980s television series Magnum, P.I. featured Doberman guard dogs named Apollo and Zeus.Google Scholar
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    Carmine Gallone’s epic Gli ultimi giorni di Pompeii (The Last Days of Pompeii, 1926) brings the Muses to life in a similar fashion, if within a different plot context: in “a clever insanity scene,” “Glaucus stares at a fresco of Zeus and the dancing Muses, and the figures on the wall suddenly come alive!” Quoted from Solomon, The Ancient World in the Cinema —(above, n. 2) 82.Google Scholar
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    Solomon, The Ancient World in the Cinema —(above, n. 2), 123–124, points to a number of the film’s cinematic sources and outlines its titanic commercial success.Google Scholar
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    Such abbreviations have a long history, however, and are not exclusively American (or low-brow). In George Bernard Shaw’s Androcles and the Lion (1913), for example, Androcles becomes “Andy” (and even “Andy Wandy” in his baby talk during his first encounter with the lion); his nagging wife Megaera is “Meggy.”Google Scholar
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    An affectionate tribute to it is the short film by Lars Christiansen, Bag om fremviseren (Two for Cassiopeia, a Love Story; 2000), whose plot reworks the earlier film’s story line.Google Scholar
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    The film’s English titles are The Wooden Horse of Troy, The Trojan Horse, and The Trojan War.Google Scholar
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    The film’s English titles are The Avenger, The Last Glory of Troy, and War of the Trojans. It was directed by Giorgio Rivalta.Google Scholar
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    Cassandras appear in Marc Allegret’s L’amante di Paride (The Loves of Three Queens or The Face That Launched a Thousand Ships, 1953), Mario Camerini’s Ulisse (Ulysses, 1955), Franco Rossi’s television Odissea (1968), Michael Cacoyannis’s The Trojan Women (1971, played by Geneviève Bujold), Enzo G. Castellari’s modern farce Ettore lo fusto (Hector the Mighty, 1975), Woody Allen’s comedy Mighty Aphrodite (1995), Chuck Russell’s The Scorpion King (2002), John Kent Harrison’s Helen of Troy (2003), a television epic, and in the animated Hercules films and series mentioned earlier. Noteworthy television adaptations of Aeschylus had Cassandras played by Mariangela Melato in Luca Ronconi’s Orestea (1975) and by Helen Mirren in Bill Hays’s The Serpent Son (1979), a three-part BBC adaptation of the Oresteia written by Kenneth McLeish and Frederich Raphael. Apollo appears in both. The British version is particularly remarkable for its distinguished cast of actresses (also Claire Bloom, Siân Phillips, Diana Rigg, and Billie Whitelaw). The short-lived British television comedy series Up Pompeii (1971) featured an unfunny Roman Cassandra.Google Scholar
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    In Marino Girolami’s L’ira di Achille (Fury of Achilles [USA], Achilles [UK], 1962), a neo-mythological muscleman epic that still demonstrates its makers’ close familiarity with the Iliad, Apollo plays a significant part as well, although he remains off screen (unlike Athena or Thetis). On first meeting Chryseis, the captive daughter of Apollo’s priest Chryses, Agamemnon boasts to her: “I am the king of kings.” Unimpressed, she counters: “And I am consecrated to Apollo, the god of kings.” Apollo miraculously reveals a treasure to Chryses with which to ransom his child; Apollo’s voice is heard on the soundtrack. He later causes a sudden storm that mysterously kills many of the Greeks; this is the film’s equivalent of the plague Apollo sends them in Book 1 of the Iliad. The omniscient narrator portentously intones: “Like darkest night, the mighty god descended and wreaked his fury [sic] on the Grecian fleet.”Google Scholar
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    Stalin’s saying is quoted in several versions and with varying dates and addressees. The most famous is in Winston S. Churchill, The Second World War, vol. 1: The Gathering Storm (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1948), 135: “‘Oho!’ said Stalin. ‘The Pope! How many divisions has he got?’”Google Scholar
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    For illustrations see Brunilde Sismondo Ridgway, The Severe Style in Greek Sculpture (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1970), figs. 5–7; she describes the temple on pages 13–17 and the statues on page 16.Google Scholar
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    Virgil, Aeneid 7.648.Google Scholar
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    Plutarch, Alexander 6. For just one example of the analogy of Alexander and Apollo cf. the close similarity in their portraits on the two coins reproduced by Robin Lane Fox, Alexander the Great (1973; rpt. London and New York: Penguin, 2004), Plates 1 and 2 (following page 288). Fox was historical advisor on Stone’s film.Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    Another row of stone lions patterned after those on Delos appears in Robert Rossen’s Alexander the Great (1956) before the palace of Philip of Macedonia. A large statue of Athena Promachos—i.e. the goddess in full warrior garb—stands nearby. All this statuary signals Philip’s and then Alexander’s military power and imperial ambition.Google Scholar
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    Odyssey 21.265–268. similarly, in Rossi’s Odissea Antinous comforts the other suitors who have failed to string Odysseus’ bow with the reminder: “Tomorrow is the festival of Apollo the archer. Let’s postpone the contest till tomorrow. He will grant us the necessary strength.”Google Scholar
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    George Depue Hadzsits, “Media of Salvation,” The Classical Weekly, 14 no. 9 (December 13, 1920), 70–71. I discuss this article and its implications in my “Introduction” to Classical Myth and Culture in the Cinema (above, n. 3), ed. Martin M. Winkler (Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2001), 3–9.Google Scholar
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    “Introduction” to Homer in English, ed. George Steiner (London: Penguin, 1996), xv-xxxiv; my quotations are from pages xxviii, xvii, and xvi.Google Scholar
  54. 54.
    Hesiod,Theogony27-28; my translation.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Transaction Publishers 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin M. Winkler
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. of Modern and Classical LanguagesGeorge Mason UniversityFairfax

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