The King's Jester

  • 1941
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

Excellent adaptation of Verdi's famed opera "Rigoletto," with the score used as incidental music. Simon is the poor hunchback reduced to a royal fool because of his condition. His job is to bring women to the young king (Brazzi) who uses them for his own lusty purposes. Simon has one secret: he has a beautiful daughter whom he wants to keep away from the...read more

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Excellent adaptation of Verdi's famed opera "Rigoletto," with the score used as incidental music. Simon is the poor hunchback reduced to a royal fool because of his condition. His job is to bring women to the young king (Brazzi) who uses them for his own lusty purposes. Simon has one

secret: he has a beautiful daughter whom he wants to keep away from the king. But he is tricked and the king has his way with her, as well. The hunchback swears revenge and hires Duranti, a gypsy girl, to seduce the king and kill him. But she, too, is wooed by the man's charms. When Simon returns

to collect the body, he is handed a sack with a corpse. He is about to dump it into the river when he hears the king singing and discovers, to his horror, that the dead body he is carrying is his daughter. Passionate and moving, Simon gives a marvelous performance, and the supporting players are

equally good. As the drama unfolds the viewer is swept up by myriad circumstances, all well-handled and delicately expressed in the screenplay. The camera work is second to none, with an excellent lighting pattern that accentuates the drama. It's hard to believe that a film this opulent, with such

incredible set decor as well, could have come out of war-torn Italy, when most other films of that country were depicting the tragedy of the modern-day man in bleak surroundings. (In Italian; English subtitles.)

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Excellent adaptation of Verdi's famed opera "Rigoletto," with the score used as incidental music. Simon is the poor hunchback reduced to a royal fool because of his condition. His job is to bring women to the young king (Brazzi) who uses them for his own l… (more)

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