Ulysses (1954 film)

Ulysses (Italian: Ulisse) is a 1954[1] Italian fantasy-adventure film based on Homer's epic poem Odyssey. The movie was directed by Mario Camerini, who co-wrote the screenplay with writer Franco Brusati. The original choice for director was Georg Wilhelm Pabst but he quit at the last minute.[2] The film's cinematographer Mario Bava co-directed the Polyphemus Cyclops segment (uncredited).

American Press Book
Directed byMario Camerini
Mario Bava (uncredited)
Produced byDino De Laurentiis
Carlo Ponti
Written byFranco Brusati
Mario Camerini
Ennio De Concini
Hugh Gray
Ben Hecht
Ivo Perilli
Irwin Shaw
StarringKirk Douglas
Silvana Mangano
Anthony Quinn
Franco Interlenghi
Rossana Podestà
Music byAlessandro Cicognini
CinematographyHarold Rosson
Mario Bava (uncredited)
Edited byLeo Catozzo
Distributed byParamount Pictures (USA)
Release date
6 October 1954 (Italy)
17 August 1955 (USA)
Running time
117 min.
BudgetITL 500,000,000 (approximately $800,000)

In the film Silvana Mangano plays two roles, as Penelope, the faithful wife of Ulysses and the sorceress, Circe. American star Kirk Douglas plays the Greek hero, Ulysses. Anthony Quinn plays Antinous. The tremendous success of this film led to the making of Hercules (1957), which was credited with igniting the Italian peplum craze of the 1960s.


The story is about Ulysses' efforts to return to his home after the end of the Trojan war, and the adventures that befell him.

The movie begins with Eurycleia saying to some women in Ulysses' home that Penelope is in charge of the household. Eurycleia tells the women not to consort with the suitors. Penelope has promised under pressure to marry one of her many suitors, who squander the wealth and land of Ulysses. She holds them off by telling them she first wants to finish her tapestry, but she unweaves it every night to stall. Telemachus, the son of Ulysses and Penelope, is sick of the suitors' behavior and decides to search for his father. Ulysses has stranded in the land of Alcinous and is found by Nausicaa.


See also


  1. Paolo Mereghetti. Il Mereghetti - Dizionario dei film. B.C. Dalai Editore, 2010. ISBN 8860736269.
  2. Dino de Laurentiis Obituary The Guardian 11 November 2010
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