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QUO VADIS REVIEW

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Sir Peter Alexander Ustinov
 ( Apr 1921 -- Mar 2004 )

 
Ustinov's childhood was difficult and stressful because of the constant conflict between his parents. He was educated at Westminister School, an experience he did not recall fondly in later years. He made his stage debut in 1938 at the Players' Theatre and quickly became established as an actor. During World War II he served as an enlisted soldier in the British Army and then returned to the theater. Besides acting, he wrote and composed music, later becoming renowned as both a theater and opera director. He also gained fame as a filmmaker, screenwriter, newspaper and magazine columnist and as a radio and television personality. For years he was a popular guest on TV talk shows in the U. S. and Britain. Over his long career, he received two Oscars as Best Supporting Actor, one for Spartacus and the other for Topkapi. He also earned three Emmy Awards, a Golden Globe and a Grammy for a children's recording. His 78 feature films include: We're No Angels (1955), six films as Hercule Poirot, Agatha Christie's famous Belgian detective, The Sundowners   (1960), Billy Budd (1962), Logan's Run (1976), The Mouse and His Child (1977) and Around the World in 80 Days   (1989). He also produced or appeared in several documentary films. His other activities included serving as a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF and as a Chancellor of Durham University. In 2003, the university changed the name of its Graduate Society to Ustinov College, in recognition of his many contributions. Unfortunately, despite many awards for his work in American films and television, Ustinov was quite contemptuous of America and Americans, an attitude he displayed on numerous occasions.

     TITLE:   QUO VADIS  
                                  

A blockbuster adaptation of a popular novel about Rome in the time of Emperor Nero. Roman officer Robert Taylor falls in love with a woman (Deborah Kerr) from the hated Christian minority. He has to manage his romance with great care to avoid bringing disaster to himself and his beloved because being a Christian or even a Christian sympathizer in Nero's Rome can get one an appointment with the lions in the coliseum - or, in Deborah Kerr's case, with a sharp-horned bull. Lavishly set and filmed. Peter Ustinov's portrayal of Nero is a masterpiece of despicability. The entire supporting cast is solid. One of the better films in the genre of biblical epics.

      

1951, Directed by Mervyn LeRoy

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A Face in the Crowd     
The African Queen       All Quiet on the Western Front    The Apartment    Bambi    Ben Hur    
The Best Years of Our Lives 

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Double Indemnity
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The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse
   

From Here To Eternity
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The Iceman Cometh   Inherit the Wind    It’s a Wonderful Life    Jesus Christ Superstar    Judgment at Nuremburg    

Julius Caesar    Key Largo Lawrence of Arabia    The Learning Tree    The List of Adrian Messenger     Little Big Man

My Fair Lady
   
The Neverending Story    North by Northwest    The Owl and the Pussycat    Porgy and Bess    

Pride of the Yankees
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Rhapsody in Blue
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To Kill a Mockingbird      The Treasure of the Sierra Madre       Twelve Angry Men       Twelve O’Clock High    

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