HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Ciambra, The
Reflection of Fear, A
Aurora Encounter, The
Breaking In
Breaking In
Please Stand By
Cockeyed Cowboys of Calico County, The
Deadpool 2
Smart Money
Lupin the Third vs. Detective Conan: The Movie
Gangsta
3 Nuts in Search of a Bolt
Magic Serpent, The
That's Not Me
There Goes the Bride
Billy the Kid versus Dracula
Liquid Sword
I, Tonya
Universal Soldier: Regeneration
Bad Match
Güeros
Anchor and Hope
One, The
Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
Lucky
Still of the Night
Home Sweet Homicide
Mannaja - A Man Called Blade
Spitfire
Killers from Space
   
 
Newest Articles
Anytime Anywhere: The Complete Goodies at the BBC Episode Guide Part 2
Anytime Anywhere: The Complete Goodies at the BBC Episode Guide Part 1
I-Spy Scotland: The Thirty Nine Steps and Eye of the Needle
Manor On Movies--Black Shampoo--three three three films in one
Manor On Movies--Invasion USA
Time Trap: Last Year in Marienbad and La Jetée
Gaining Three Stone: Salvador, Natural Born Killers and Savages
Right Said Bernard: Cribbins on DVD
1969: The Year Westerns Couldn't Get Past
A Network Horror Double Bill: Assault and Death Line on Blu-ray
The Edie Levy: Edie Sedgwick, Andy Warhol and Ciao! Manhattan
The Ultimate Trip: The Original Psychedelic Movies
Players of Games: Willy Wonka, Tron and Ready Player One
What Am I Doing Hangin' 'Round? The Ends of The Monkees
Flings and Arrows: Conquest vs Flesh + Blood
   
 
  Canterbury Tales, The Pilgrim's ProgressBuy this film here.
Year: 1972
Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Hugh Griffith, Laura Betti, Ninetto Davoli, Franco Citti, Josephine Chaplin, Alan Webb, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Vernon Dobtcheff, Derek Deadman, Nicholas Smith, Michael Balfour, Jenny Runacre, Tom Baker, Robin Askwith, Willoughby Goddard, Philip Davis
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Sex
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: In medieval times, a group of pilgrims are assembling to make their way across the countryside of England, but one of them, Geoffrey Chaucer (Pier Paolo Pasolini), is inspired by this event to begin forming a selection of stories in his head which he plans to put to paper once he gets the chance. As the hubbub of the town continues, with wrestling and singing and selling supposed holy relics, the first tale arises, one where nobleman Sir January (Hugh Griffith) is holding a celebration to mark his latest wedding to a far younger woman...

After director Pasolini had directed The Decameron, he dived straight into the second in his so-called Trilogy of Life, three films which took aged texts and had a very Pasolini put spin on them, much to the dismay of those who held them dear as classics of early literature. Nevertheless, the extremes he went to in adapting them appealed to many more who would never have dreamed of sitting down to read the originals, mainly because they included a lot of sex and nudity, as well as daring material which would not be considered fit for polite society, not outside of a cinema of the seventies at any rate. So while there were voices decrying the Pasolini method, he felt he was getting through to the audience which mattered.

Certainly there was an irreverence to this film which belied any of the more serious themes he wished to convey, and if it wasn't exactly hilarious for a comedy, even one based on a medieval work, then enough colour filled the screen to make it worthy of interest. Taking the form of an anthology of the Canterbury Tales, picking and choosing from the source to fashion a genuinely convincing sense of Chaucer's times, it had been filmed in Britain at its most bucolic, utilising a section of local talent which Pasolini augmented with some of his Italian actors. As this was dubbed into the Italian language, English speakers had the confusing prospect of watching the likes of Griffith clearly speaking their own native tongue, only with another, foreign voice over the top.

It didn't take that much adjusting, and if you were put off there was always the English language dub, but what was more intriguing for Brits was to see actors from its stage and screen appearing in a bawdy art movie, and occasionally revealing all. Robin Askwith may not have shown anything off we had not seen in his Confessions series, but in those he didn't spend a couple of minutes pissing on his fellow cast members, and as for future Doctor Who Tom Baker, seeing him naked was not something generations of Whovians were going to forget in a hurry, no matter how they tried. Interestingly, both Baker and Askwith spoke glowingly of Pasolini in their autobiographies, not least because he supplied them with excellent anecdotes.

The director's appreciation of Charlie Chaplin led him to bring back Ninetto Davoli from The Decameron to play a very Chaplinesque figure, complete with bowler hat and cane, and went even further in casting the great silent comic's own daughter Josephine Chaplin in the opening instalment, so you could well see his mind was more on humour than the previous entry in his trilogy. That said, he still found space to criticise the way a rich man was able to buy himself out of a homosexual buggery charge while the poor man who committed the same consensual act was executed, that need to expose hypocrisy back once again. The Church was in for much of that scabrous derision, and for many the most indelible imagery of his Canterbury Tales was in its last five minutes and Pasolini's version of Hell, which featured friars shat out of a giant devil's arse, in case you were in any doubt about how he felt about holy men. There was a joie de vivre to this trilogy which was rarely seen in others of his oeuvre, and this in the middle was little different. Music by Ennio Morricone.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3200 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (2)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Steven Seagal
Pam Grier
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
  Patrick Keenan
Enoch Sneed
Ian Phillips
  Afra Khan
  Dan Malone
   

 

Last Updated: