El Cid

MPAA Rating: PG

Entertainment: +3 1/2

Content: +2

First released over thirty years ago, EL CID is an epic that has been restored and seems to have improved with time. Set in Spain around 1080 A.D., the movie follows the legendary rise of don Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar (Charlton Heston), known as El Cid (Arabic for "the Master"). Enroute to his wedding with Jimena (Sopia Loren), he frees five Muslim chiefs who were captured setting fire to a Spanish village, and wins their unending loyalty. Having killed Jimena's father in a duel over charges of treason, don Rodrigo wins her back in a duel by mandate of the king. Meanwhile the king dies, and his heirs squabble over the throne. Refusing allegiance to the new king, don Rodrigo is banished. After many days of travel, he is greeted by hundreds of loyal followers, including some Muslims, who wish him to be king. Threatened by an attack from an African Moorish king, the city of Valencia is taken over by the Cid and his army, which now has grown to thousands. Despite overwhelming losses at Valencia, the Cid makes a legendary comeback. While over three hours in length (plus intermission), this epic has been beautifully and carefully restored, with magnificent music and richly colorful views of the Spanish countryside and the varied clothing of the time.

EL CID is an outstanding example that action films do not require foul language, sex and nudity to be entertaining. There are many scenes of prolonged, bloody fighting in the various battles. None of the violence, however, is gratuitous. There are numerous times when the Moors refer to Allah and their religious beliefs, but there is always great respect shown for both the Christian and the Muslim religions. The message plays at the start of the movie that El Cid rose above religious hatreds and called on all Spaniards to unite against being overtaken by the African king. Many times in the film, El Cid, Jimena and others take time to pray. The violence in the prolonged battle scenes is too intense for young children; otherwise we can recommend this classic film for adults.

Preview Reviewer: Alice Anderson
Miramax Films, 18 E. 48th St., Ste 1601, NY, NY 10017

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: None

Profanity: None

Violence: Many times - moderate to severe (king slaps queen, many battle scenes, sword fights, duels)

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: None

Other: Both Muslim and Christian religions treated with respect

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Intended Audience:

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