1914 / 148m - Italy
Cabiria poster


April 22, 2023


A classic Italian epic. The film is often cited as an inspiration for Griffith's Intolerance, though luckily it's a touch shorter. While no doubt a majestic film in its time, the abundance of intertitles, the very limited camera work and the simple plot make it quite a chore to sit through.

When a volcano erupts, chaos ensues. At that moment, Cabiria is kidnapped by pirates and sold off to Carthage, where she'll be used as a human sacrifice. Her only hope is Fulvio, a Roman nobleman, who will try his hardest to save Cabiria. The looming war between Carthage and Rome isn't helping his mission.

The constant piano music is grating, the plot is full of repetition and the cinematography isn't very riveting. While this was still early days for cinema, way more interesting films would be released in the following years. Cabiria is mostly just a prelude to mediocre Hollywood epics, not something that excites me.