Share

Watch It

On DVD: Now | On Blu-ray: TBD

Ludwig Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

Luchino Visconti (Count don Luchino Visconti di Modrone) was a film director, true, but he was also a nobleman and a grand patron of traditional European culture: opera, art, music, crafts and literature. These interests enliven many of his films, but few have been so inspired as the four-hour epic, Ludwig, about the castle-building "mad king" of Bavaria. This long film, made very near the end of Visconti's life, suffers greatly when shortened, as every moment is essential to the story. There are at least four different versions of the film (from just under three hours to over four hours in length); the uncut four-hour version is the most coherent, even though many might find it rather long. The disintegration of aristocratic individuals is a continuing theme of Visconti's, though Ludwig's is the most thorough decay he filmed. The last ruling king of Bavaria (1845-1886) is noted for many things besides his eccentricities: he sold Bavaria to Germany, ending the rule of the Bavarian monarchy; he built amazing castles all over his country (with the proceeds from the sale); and he was Richard Wagner's main sponsor. He was also a notorious recluse, conducting a lifelong platonic love affair with Empress Elizabeth of Austria, and finally succumbing to his adoration of handsome men in a series of outrageous affairs and orgies. His excesses eventually led to his being declared mentally incompetent and being held prisoner in his own castle. The film depicts this incredible life from his coronation at age 19 to his (unproved) assassination well over 20 years later. ~ Clarke Fountain, Rovi

Awards

Awarded by
Nominee
Category
Year
Status
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Piero Tosi Best Costume Design 1973 Nominee

Cast

Helmut Berger
as Ludwig II, King of Bavaria
Romy Schneider
as Elisabeth of Austria
Trevor Howard
as Richard Wagner
Silvana Mangano
as Cosima von Buelow
Gert Fröbe
as Father Hoffman
Helmut Griem
as Capt. Durcheim
Alexander Allerson
Kurt Grosskurth
Gerard Herter
Carla Mancini
Louise Vincent
Manfred Furst
Umberto Orsini
as Count Von Holstein
Mark Burns
as Hans von Buelow
Maurizio Bonuglia
as Mayor
Henning Schluter
Ingrid Caven
as Lola Montez (uncredited)
Gernot Moehner
Folker Bohnet
as Joseph Kainz
Heinz Moog
as Prof. Gudden
Marc Porel
as Richard Hornig
Nora Ricci
as Countess Ida Ferenczy
Isabella Telezynska
as Queen Mother
Adriana Asti
as Lila Von Buliowski
John Moulder-Brown
as Prince Otto
Sonia Petrova
as Sophie
Umberto Orsini
as Count Von Holstein
Marc Porel
as Richard Hornig
John Moulder-Brown
as Prince Otto
Folker Bohnet
as Joseph Kainz
Mark Burns
as Hans von Buelow
Adriana Asti
as Lila Von Buliowski
Nora Ricci
as Countess Ida Ferenczy
Maurizio Bonuglia
as Mayor
Isabella Telezynska
as Queen Mother
Heinz Moog
as Prof. Gudden
Ingrid Caven
as Lola Montez (uncredited)

Crew

Luchino Visconti
Director
Dieter Geissler
Producer
Ugo Santalucia
Producer
Enrico Medioli
Screenwriter
Luchino Visconti
Screenwriter
Suso Cecchi D'Amico
Screenwriter
Armando Nannuzzi
Cinematographer
Jacques Offenbach
Featured Music
Robert Schumann
Featured Music
Franco Mannino
Composer (Music Score)
Franco Mannino
Musical Direction/Supervision
Ruggero Mastroianni
Editor
Mario Scisci
Art Director
Robert Gordon Edwards
Executive Producer
Enzo Eusepi
Set Designer
Piero Tosi
Costume Designer
Giuseppe Muratori
Sound/Sound Designer
Franco Mannino
Supervisor/Manager
Lucio Trentini
Production Manager
Advertisement