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Le Streghe

The Witches
Les Sorcières / Hexen von Heute

Italy 1967
produced by
Dino De Laurentiis for Dino de Laurentiis Cinematografica, Les Productions Artistes Associés
directed by Luchino Visconti (segment La Strega Bruciata Viva), Mauro Bolognini (segment Senso Civico), Pier Paolo Pasolini (segment La Terra Vista dalla Luna), Franco Rossi (segment La Siciliana), Vittorio De Sica (segment Una Sera come le Altre)
starring segment La Strega Bruciata Viva: Silvana Mangano, Annie Girardot, Francisco Rabal, Massimo Girotti, Véronique Vendell, Elsa Albani, Clara Calamai, Marilù Tolo, Nora Ricci, Dino Mele, Helmut Berger, Bruno Filippini, Leslie French; segment Senso Civico: Silvana Mangano, Alberto Sordi; segment La Terra Vista dalla Luna: Silvana Mangano, Totò, Ninetto Davoli, Laura Betti, Luigi Leoni; segment La Siciliana: Silvana Mangano; segment Una Sera come le Altre: Silvana Mangano, Clint Eastwood, Valentino Macchi, Corinne Fontaine, Armando Bottin, Gianni Gori, Paolo Gozlino, Franco Moruzzi, Angelo Santi, Pietro Torrisi
written by Giuseppe Patroni Griffi with Cesare Zavattini (segment La Strega Bruciata Viva), Agenore Incrocci, Furio Scarpelli (as Age - Scarpelli) & Bernardino Zapponi (segments Senso Civico, La Siciliana), Pier Paolo Pasolini (segment La Terra Vista dalla Luna), Cesare Zavattini with Fabio Carpi & Enzo Muzii (segment Una Sera come le Altre), music by Ennio Morricone, Piero Piccioni

Flash Gordon (cameo), Diabolik (cameo), Mandrake the Magician (cameo), Sadik (cameo), Batman (cameo)

review by
Mike Haberfelner


  • La Strega Bruciata Viva: Hugely popular actress Gloria (Silvana Mangano) hides away from her fame in the chalet of her best friend Valeria (Annie Girardot), but even there she's treated like the image she's become rather than the woman she is, so women let her feel their jealousy rather openly while men, including Valeria's husband (Francisco Rabal) lust after her ...
  • Senso Civico: A female motorist (Mangano again) volunteers to drive the victim of an accident (Alberto Sordi) to a hospital, but might have her own ulterior motives for doing so ...
  • La Terra Vista dalla Luna: After the death of their wife/mother, father (Totò) and son (Ninetto Davoli) are looking for a replacement that might please them both - but that's easier said then done, until they meet a deaf-mute beauty (Sivana Mangano). But this unity comes with its own set of problems ...
  • La Siciliana: A Sicilian woman (yep, Silvana Mangano) confides to her father that a man might have looked at her the wrong way - which causes a serial bloodbath, just to have her honour unspoilt ...
  • Una Sera come le Altre: The marriage of Giovanna (one more time Silvana Mangano) and Carlo (Clint Eastwood) has grown somewhat stale over the years, and despite constant hints, Giovanna can't make Carlo understand that - so she more and more retreats to her fantasy world where she's an adored superstar, has her revenge on him, and meets up with comicbook heroes Flash Gordon (Angelo Santi), Diabolik (Gianni Gori), Mandrake (Paolo Gozlino), Sadik (Franco Moruzzi) and Batman (Pietro Torrisi) ...

Available on DVD !

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The Witches sure is a weird and weirdly conceived anthology inasmuch as the five segments of the movie have little in common other than their lead Silvana Mangano, wife of the film's producer Dino De Laurentiis. Of course, the supposed underlying theme is the role of women in society, but that can then be said about almost every film involving a woman, so it doesn't particularly stick here. Anyways, the result is a bit on the uneven side to be sure, especially since it blends heavy drama with broad comedy, adds sparkles of surrealism to some of its tales while others are morality tales - so no, the film is no masterpiece ... but quite fascinating all the same as it shows many of its participants on rather unexpected territory, to make this a must-have footnote for fans of pretty much any of the involved, and a rather wonderful and beautifully shot walk down nostalgia lane for all fans of vintage Euro cinema on top of that.

Not great in the traditional sense of the word, but definitely worth your time.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
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Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD