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The Crusades Details


The Holy Wars are given the usual overblown Cecil B. DeMille treatment in The Crusades. It all begins in the 12th-century AD, when Jerusalem falls into the hands of the Saracens, and the Christians are slaughtered or sold into slavery. A holy man known as The Hermit (C. Aubrey Smith) rallies the rulers of England and Europe to launch a Crusade to reclaim Jerusalem in the name of Christianity. Among those embarking upon this massive undertaking is England's King Richard the Lion-Hearted (played as a swaggering roughneck by Henry Wilcoxon), who finances his knights by marrying wealthy French princess Berengaria (Loretta Young) sight unseen. Saladin (Ian Keith), the elegant and well-spoken ruler of the Saracens, attempts to stave off the crusaders by kidnapping Berengaria and holding her hostage. Sensing that he can never win against so formidable a collection of foes, Saladin eventually opens the gates of Jerusalem to all but Richard the Lion-Hearted, with whom he has a personal score to settle. In the film's most memorable scene, the fundamental difference between the boorish Richard and the cultured Saladin is demonstrated when the Saracen ruler delicately cleaves Berengaria's silk scarf in twain with his gleaming sword. It took a great deal of nerve to depict the film's hero as a thuggish brute and the nominal villain as the most sympathetic character in the story, but DeMille gets away with it in The Crusades, and still has time left over to deliver his usual quota of thrills, pageantry, convoluted history and campy dialogue. And yes, that is Ann Sheridan as a Christian captive in the opening scenes. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi


Awarded by
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Victor Milner Best Cinematography 1935 Nominee


Loretta Young
as Berengaria
Henry Wilcoxon
as Richard I the Lionheart
Ian Keith
as Saladin
C. Aubrey Smith
as The Hermit
Katherine de Mille
as Alice of France
Joseph Schildkraut
as Conrad of Montferrat
Alan Hale
as Blondel
George Barbier
as Sancho, King of Navarre
Montagu Love
as The Blacksmith
Lumsden Hare
as Earl Robert of Leicester
William Farnum
as Hugo, Duke of Burgundy
Hobart Bosworth
as Frederick, Duke of the Germans
Pedro de Cordoba
as Karakush
Jack Rutherford
as Knight
Harry Cording
as Amir
Gilda Oliva
Albert Conti
as Leopold, Duke of Austria
Edwin Maxwell
as Ship's Master
Edgar Dearing
as Cart Man
Guy Usher
as Grey Beard
Josef Swickard
as Buyer
Kenneth Gibson
as Capt. of English Men-at-Arms
Addison Richards
as Sentry
William B. Davidson
as Amir
Ramsay Hill
as John, Prince of England
Maurice Black
as Amir
Jean Fenwick
as Christian Girl
Stanley Andrews
as Amir
J. Carrol Naish
as Arab Slave Seller
Colin Tapley
as Stranger/Messenger
Jason Robards, Sr.
as Amir
George MacQuarrie
as Capt. of Templars
Henry C. Gordon
as Philip of France
Sam Flint
as Capt. of Hospitalers
Alphonse Ethier
as Priest
Winter Hall
as Archbishop
Oscar Rudolph
as Philip's Squire
Anna Demetrio
as Duenna
Fred Malatesta
as William, King of Sicily
Emma Dunn
as Mother of Alan
Ann Sheridan
as Christian Girl
Mischa Auer
as Monk
Boyd Irwin
as Templar
Maurice Murphy
as Alan, Richard's Squire


Cecil B. DeMille
Cecil B. DeMille
Dudley Nichols
Harold Lamb
Book Author
Harold Lamb
Waldemar Young
Victor Milner
Anne Bauchens
Travis Banton
Costume Designer
Gordon Jennings
Special Effects