Artikelnummer 3046

L'ASSEDIO DELL' ALCAZAR (The Siege of the Alcazar) (1940) * with switchable English subtitles *

Augusto Genina Writers: Augusto Genina (story), Alessandro De Stefani (story), 5 more credits » Stars: Fosco Giachetti, Mireille Balin, María Denis

IMPORTANT:  The German version of this film is available under the title, Der Kampf um Alkazar, also with subtitles.  This version of the film in Italian, however, is visually of much better quality.  Also, the dialogue in the dubbed German version is, in many places, quite different.

The day the Spanish Civil War breaks out, Colonel Jose Moscardó, a veteran of the war in Africa, arrives in Madrid to prepare for his trip to Berlin with the Spanish delegation that is going to participate in the Olympic Games. Learning of the military uprising, he returns quickly to Toledo.  As commander of the fortress at Alcazar, Moscardó has no doubts and at seven o'clock in the morning of July 21 1936, announces which side of the conflict he's on.  Aware of the precariousness of the situation he is in, he digs in at Alcázar with 1,800 people, where they resist constant attacks and bombings until the arrival of Nationalist troops on September 27.  One of the first post-Civil War films put out, it features the current spirit of militarism and patriotism, as well as a respect for traditions that prevailed in those years.   Filmed in co-production with Italy, there were two versions, in Italian and Spanish, both directed by the Italian Augusto Genina.  For the filmmaker Augusto Genina, this film was a response to the "revolutionary destructiveness" of  "Battleship Potemkin", a film so effective in promoting Bolshevism, that no other than Josef Goebbels called it a propaganda masterpiece. 

This version is a later restoration of the film, which, after WWII, was gutted by Italian censors in a gesture of political correctness and in an attempt to downplay Italy's support of the Nationalists.  The original film had a prologue explaining the premise and background of the film.  The restored version replaces that prologue with information about the restoration of the film from various sources to supplement the heavily censored postwar Italian version.  The German version of this film, Der Kampf um Alkazar, which we also sell with switchable subtitles, but whose quality is nowhere near as good as this version, has a much more sinister prologue in the film's beginning.

DVD-R is in Italian with switchable English subtitles.  Approx. 109 mins. + a contemporary, 44 minute newsreel (in German with switchable English subtitles).  See film sample for audio and video quality!

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Superbly done film on Spanish Civil War, 14.10.2022 19:32
L'ASSEDIO DELL'ALCAZAR is a superbly realized film about the legendary siege of the Alcazar, the Spanish Military Academy in July-August 1936, by Leftist Republican troops and militia. Many films of the period are simple expositions of propaganda. SIEGE rises above that, and actually describes in some detail what occurred, the actual heroism of the Nationalist defenders, while not ignoring some human interests stories along the way.
The quality of the Italian issue (with excellent English subtitles) is quite good, sharp and clear. The military/siege action is very realistic.
I have seen dozens of "war films" from the 1930s-1940s period, and this one is one of the finest.
I highly recommend it.   Dr. BDC
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