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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A WEIRD CREW @VERNE'S WORLD OF MISADVENTURE
This period adventure based on a book by "Jules Verne" is an atmospheric ,dark,haunting thriller with excellent cinematography and a taut plot .

It is set on the ragged coast of Cape Horn where a pirate ship with an utterly brutal and psychopathic crew takes over a crucial light-house to deceptively lure the passenger ships onto the rocky and deceptively...
Published on 16 July 2008 by doctor oz MB,MRCP

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A seriously creepy and horribly violent adaptation of a posthumous novel by Jules Verne
This little known film very certainly surprised me, freaked me out a lot - and I also found it rather depressing. Before reading further, please be advised that this review contains limited SPOILERS.

"The light at the edge of the world", made in 1971, is an adaptation of the novel "Le phare du bout du monde" written by Jules Verne. This eminent French author...
Published on 18 Jun 2012 by Darth Maciek


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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A WEIRD CREW @VERNE'S WORLD OF MISADVENTURE, 16 July 2008
This review is from: The Light At The Edge Of The World [DVD] (DVD)
This period adventure based on a book by "Jules Verne" is an atmospheric ,dark,haunting thriller with excellent cinematography and a taut plot .

It is set on the ragged coast of Cape Horn where a pirate ship with an utterly brutal and psychopathic crew takes over a crucial light-house to deceptively lure the passenger ships onto the rocky and deceptively treacherous coast ,in order to pillage the freight and the rich travellers .

The relentless brutality of the pirates is sharply contrasted by the rugged beauty of the naturally majestic natural environment,which the director and cinematographer exploit with an arduous poetic delight .

Yul Brynner is sheer charisma as the elusive and eclectic captain of the weird but eccentrically gratuitious pirates,he has a supporting lieutenant played with a delicious evil streak by the talented French actor 'Drouot' and 'Kirk Douglas' is the unfortunate yet resourceful and moral keeper of the light house ,who is being hunted by the pirate crew as he tries to survive against a group of murderous thugs trapped in this perilous milieu .

Samantha Eggar arrives as a mysterious beauty surviving a brilliantly staged shipwreck ,where a passenger liner is deceptively lured to crash on the rocky coast ,and the events get very surreal with an eerie light and some extremely powerful yet violent sequences where the army of ferocious pirates are vying for the sensual beauty of Eggar like a pack of wolves.

She is used as a sexual pawn and bait in the game between Yul brynner and Kirk Douglas to get the dutiful light house keeper to surrender, and here Brynner reveals a very quaint yet interesting villainous aspect of his character which is magificently acted,while Kirk is equally splendid in a very physically and psychologically demanding role .

The gratuitious violence though serves the purpose of exploring the relationship between this naturally hostile environment and human will to survive and i love the period details and antique decor of the interiors as well as the lush rugged exteriors with the vividly staged shipwreck and the sanguine massacre in detail, amidst a torrential storm and an unmissable and unpredictable finale with some great action set pieces where the light-house and the ship becomes the centre-stage of this unique drama .

Intelligently violent and exquisitely entertaining ,if you like sophisticated action adventures with a wild twist with raw acting ,this is heaven indeed for 'Jules Verne 'fans and the dvd is an excellent restoration of the origonal print too,and thanks to mister Kirk Douglas who produced this quaint adventure .

The dialogues are sparse and the camera is eloquently used to capture the psyche of the main trio in trivial details with brief flashbacks which define their characters and fuse the mysterious past to a turbulent present with a surreal affect .

A very pleasant surprise for fans of jules verne ,Samantha Eggar and Yul brynner too who steals the show in a definitive role like in the science fiction 'Westworld' .
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Movie Way Ahead of Its Time, 17 July 2011
By 
Tony Dickin (MOSMAN, NSW AUSTRALIA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Light At The Edge Of The World [DVD] (DVD)
Yes, you can tell this is an old movie but the themes and ideas are very contemporary. You have adventure, a female interest and some pretty explicit torture scenes. Today's kids would laugh at the special effects but the themes are strong, the acting convincing and the location very evocative of the story line. Filmed on the Costa Brava in Spain, the location is very rugged and beautiful. Plus, if you research the life of Salvador Dali you will read of the many wild parties and drinking sessions he had with the stars and crew. Jules Verne at his best.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A seriously creepy and horribly violent adaptation of a posthumous novel by Jules Verne, 18 Jun 2012
By 
Darth Maciek "Darth Maciek" (Darth Maciek is out there...) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Light At The Edge Of The World [DVD] (DVD)
This little known film very certainly surprised me, freaked me out a lot - and I also found it rather depressing. Before reading further, please be advised that this review contains limited SPOILERS.

"The light at the edge of the world", made in 1971, is an adaptation of the novel "Le phare du bout du monde" written by Jules Verne. This eminent French author wrote it in 1901, but the book was published only in 1905, a couple of months after Verne died. Being amongst the last Verne's works, it is somehow different, darker and more violent than his earlier, more famous novels like "Around the world in 80 days", "20.000 leagues under the seas" or "Mysterious island".

The story happens in 1865 and its center is a lighthouse situated on a small desolate island somewhere in the southern end of South America (Argentina or Chile). A band of pirates under the command of a mysterious Jonathan Kongre takes the control of the lighthouse and murders two of the keepers. The pirates want to lure passing ships towards the rocks with a false light, when keeping the lighthouse out of service. But the third keeper, Denton, is still alive and hiding on the island - and he will try his best to stop the pirates.

In the film Jonathan Kongre, pirate leader, is played by Yul Brynner and the character of Denton is played by Kirk Douglas. The famous Spanish actor Fernando Rey appears briefly as the head keeper of the lighthouse, Captain Moriz - but his screen time is very limited... Belgian actor Jean-Claude Drouot, who much earlier became famous in continental Europe by playing "Thierry La Fronde" (a kind of French Robin Hood) in very popular French TV series plays here the character of Virgilio, who is Kongre's right hand. Finally, Samantha Eggar plays the role of Arabella, a young woman kept prisoner by the pirates.

The novel itself was quite violent and dark, but this adapation is very, very different from Verne's initial text as it was deliberately "hardened". Murders are very graphic and there were new elements added by the director: a gang rape, a scene in which a man is being skinned alive and a moment of very graphic animal cruelty. They all made this film really hard to watch by moments.

But the most peculiar is the presentation of the pirates themselves - and they are very different from what Jules Verne described. Captain Jonathan Kongre, a former slave merchant is not only a twisted, sadistic megalomaniac, but he is also a bisexual pedophile, keeping a young black boy as his slave/lover. And he is also insane. First mate Virgilio is a cross-dresser and it is suggested that he is also homosexual, popular amongst the rest of the crew... He seems also to have something against the women in general, because he certainly viscerally HATES the only girl present in the story! He almost never talks and he seems to be barking mad (even worse than his captain)! Both he and captain Kongre also seem to enjoy wearing woman's jewelry...

The rest of pirates are a bizarre bunch, with many being South American Indians but dressed like Apache warriors and the rest being mostly Latinos and one guy very Scandinavian looking. They have very few firearms - in fact, if some have cutlasses, most of them have medieval looking halberds, spears, and also axes and swords which seem to come straight from "Lord of the Rings"... Virgilio himself wears a samurai sword (in 1865!). They have cannons on their ship, but other than that only the captain and a couple of others seem to have revolvers or pistols. Also their clothes seem to be deliberately a mixture of all kind of styles and fashions - some (furs and skins) seem coming more from Iron Age Europe, than anything worn in XIX century... Last but not least, they seem to belong to a kind of weird cult, wearing on solemn occasions some occultist black mantles, chanting weird prayers - and burning their fallen comrades on pyres, like heathens in Ancient Times.

The character of Arabella didn't exist in the book and it seems she was added to the film just to allow the director to put some sexual sadistic accents to the film. The whole story is rather nihilistic as it seems to have no point - it shows a lot of weirdness and violence just to show weirdness and violence. And this film, at least for my personal taste, was really, but really depressing!

But I still give it three stars, because of the excellent actors (Douglas, Brynner, Eggar, Drouot), of the unique atmosphere (a desolate island which seems really to be at the end of the world) and the great effort made by the director to create a kind of disturbing surrealistic painting on screen. I am not certain that you can enjoy this film, but it certainly is something you do not see every day. Weird, freaky, creepy, violent, perverted, depressing - but certainly quite unique...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Kirk's light, 6 July 2014
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This review is from: The Light At The Edge Of The World [DVD] (DVD)
Unusual film but very enjoyable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A pioneering adventure film from the early-'70s, 18 May 2013
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This review is from: The Light At The Edge Of The World [DVD] (DVD)
An interesting adventure film from the early-'70s based on a Jules Verne story that can only be described as being bio-cosmic. Off the bleak location of Cape Horn around 1865, three light-house keepers: a jaded ex-miner with a troubled past,Will Denton (Kirk Douglas), Captain Moritz (Fernando Rey), young Felipe
(Massimo Ranieri) plus the latter's pet Capuchin monkey are confronted by wreckers led by pirate captain, Jonathan Kongre (Yul Brynner). After his companions are brutally murdered, Denton ekes out a passive existence in a cave till he resolves to fight back assisted by ship's engineer, Giuseppe Montefiore (Renato Salvatore) a survivor from one of the ships lured to the rocks by the pirates. The desperate situation is complicated by the presence of another survivor, a young English woman with flawed instincts, Arabella (Samantha Eggar), who is used by Kongre to imitate Denton's former love, Emily Jane. Douglas and Brynner act with tremendous flair: Douglas gives another heroic Nietzschean performance vis-a-vis 20,000 Leagues under the Sea (1954) and Ulisse (1954). In terms of his appearance although he does not sport the usual curly blond locks, he still looks almost Germanic - a sort of Nineteenth-Century hippie journeyman - bearded, with straight light brown hair and fiery blue-green eyes. Brynner is a flamboyant counter-point. In some ways this film from 1971 seems like an inversion of Queimada! [1968-1970] and not only with the casting of Renato Salvatore. For me it is one of the key adventure films of the early-'70s which were pioneering years. The visual relationships and props are compelling. For example, Kongre's magnificent white stallion with its unicorn-like horn; the lighthouse itself with its silvery steel frame plus the Victorian fittings. Despite some squeamish scenes and illogical phases the extraordinary Spanish settings - the white-topped rising arches crashing against the jagged rocks and super-bright, surreal and psychedelic colours give this film a metaphysical feel.
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