Rome and Juliet (1955, USSR)
I think I get the purpose of ballet now: It’s a way to have have both story and music, without having it interrupted by singing. The dancing is just something to keep your eyes distracted with while you listen to the music and try to remember how the story goes. But then if that is the case, I don’t see why they make such a fuss about the dancing. Maybe I’ve missed something after all. Watched it all. Btw, whose idea of a cruel joke was it transport Shakespeare into a medium without dialogue?
Son of Sinbad (1955, USA)
In almost every movie that is set in the Biblical past or the near East, you’ll find an Obligatory Decadent Banquet Scene at around the 1:00 mark, where nobles recline lazily by their dinner tables, while they watch a pretty girl dance. It’s usually the only scene worth watching, because you really can’t go wrong with that sort of thing. The one in this movie is unusual in that it features pole dancing. Watched: 5 minutes.
The Prodigal (1955, USA)
I’m sure there is a right way to tell the story of the Prodigal Son, but a big, loud Bible epic isn’t it. You can tell the worst of the worst Bible epics by the voiceover in the intro that explains how people in ancient times all worshipped the evil gods Baahl and Astarte etc. etc., except for one small village of indomitable Hebrews. Watched: 4 minutes. It doesn’t even have a proper Obligatory Decadent Banquet Scene.